Saturday, September 22, 2012

Music Business/Law Tips - "Self Promotion"

Marketing and promotion is imperative to this industry at all levels. If you are really serious you have to hire someone good to do PR. You need to play as much as possible in your region (and beyond within driving distance to hit new audiences/cities), and really do a lot of internet promo which is very possible and affordable for an indie artist these days. Lots of YouTube videos are also great as they can go viral (can be you live or in your room). When you are indie you can do more grass roots things and then you will start to bubble up and the mainstream pays more attention if you are really good and the public starts to react. Some specific things I recommend you do: 1. Get the Film/TV Music Guide from and try hitting up some music supervisors. 2. Try to co-opt the similar-sounding "famous" artists fans by studying how those artists market themselves and who their fans are. Try to hit up blogs that will feature/mention you [check out for genre blogs] and hit up those blogs and hopefully if your name and music is out there enough on the web when someone listens to a similar-sounding famous artist you will come up as a "recommendation" for a fan to check out if they like that they will like you sort of thing. 3. Hire someone good to do PR over an extended period - more press/exposure is always good. 4. Tour/play as much as possible. Maybe go to LA, NYC or Nashville for a music conference to meet more people and play a club and meet other artists and business folks that work in your genre. Ben McLane Esq

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Music Business/Law Tips - "Copyright Action Basics"

If one feels they have a copyright infringement action, they must evaluate the following basic information before moving forward: 1. The term of copyright in general is life of the author (or co-authors) + 70 years from date of death of last surviving author. Publication does not matter under the 1978 Copyright Act (which applies to any song written after 1/1/78) unless its a song written for a corporation. 2. The term "statute of limitations" means how long someone has to file a legal claim once there has been an illegal act (like an infringement) committed. Under the Copyright Act, the statute of limitations is 3 years from the "discovery" of the claim. After the deadline, any right to file an action is waived. The above laws apply regardless of whether the song was "produced" or not, "performed" or not, whether the writer is "known" or not, or (with some exceptions) whether there was any "work for hire" contract in place or not. Ben McLane Esq