Did you know from the moment you think about an idea you own it? Whether it be lyrics, a beat, an idea or whatever comes from your brain it's yours! When you're an aspiring music artist this is especially important because you want to share your work, but when you share your work without taking the proper steps you are actually giving it away for free and allowing any and everyone to capitalize off of your product. But you're in luck because I am here to help you! Years ago when I began producing music like you, I was eager to let people hear me. I just wanted to make beats and the world would hear my beats and I'd be famous because that's how it works right? WRONG? Now I'm not saying don't give your music away for free or let people hear it because there is a lot of benefits that can come with that as well. I'm saying Do it Properly. In this blog, I'll be sharing with you how to get started sharing your music the right way.
1. Copyright Your Music: Many people skip this step which is by far the most important step. A copyright is he exclusive legal right, given to an originator or an assignee to print, publish, perform, film, or record literary, artistic, or musical material, and to authorize others to do the same. This is very important because once you copyright your work nobody else can claim it or use it without your given permission. Visit https://www.copyright.gov/ to start the process.
2. Publishing: Did you know that you could self publish your music. In simple terms a Publisher is the person who distributes the music and makes sure every party of a song is paid. You can do this yourself and make sure you are paid and then pay the producer, other writers and other artists that are apart of your projects or you could pay a publishing company. If you would like to start your own company my go to guide was this https://www.bmi.com/news/entry/how_to_start_your_own_music_publishing_company. If you would like to pay a company to take care of this for you can visit any one of these listed companies here http://www.songwriteruniverse.com/publisherlist.htm
3. Music Registration: Once your publishing is in order you want to move onto selecting a Performance Rights Organization. A performance rights organization (PRO), also known as a performing rights society, provides intermediary functions, particularly collection of royalties, between copyright holders and parties who wish to use copyrighted works publicly in locations such as shopping and dining venues. This also includes parties that want to use your music for TV Shows, Video Games, YouTube videos and other commercial uses. You can even get paid for internet streaming. I have listed a few PRO's below to choose from. This is how you will collect royalties.
Though there is much more information this is a great place to start and I do want to stress to you that you will have to pay a little money depending on the route you choose to take and what company you will use to get started. Copyrighting your music definitely cost money. Signing up to be your own publisher or paying a company to publish will also cost money. Now, with Registering your music you can use sites like BMI and Soundexchange for free but many others do charge because they are covering more than one royalty. Join me on my next blog as I discuss different types of royalties and why being covered for all of them is important.
This is only the beginning but please stick with me you can do this :)