Liane Bonin Starr

Liane Bonin Starr

Liane Bonin Starr has written about the music industry for over a decade, starting as a music critic for the Los Angeles Reader and more recently interviewing music supervisors and musicians for publications ranging from Emmy magazine to the Hollywood Reporter. She has been a segment producer for public radio (KCRW, KPCC) and her byline has appeared in Entertainment Weekly, People, Mademoiselle, and elsewhere.

How to Get The Most Out of Your Soundcloud Account

Soundcloud has become a critical tool for any songwriter or musician who wants to reach an audience of potential fans – but it isn’t as easy to do as simply pushing a button. As the largest online music community, Soundcloud affords an independent music maker a significant platform, but one that’s crowded with thousands and thousands of other artists, too. Here are some important steps to keep in mind when using Soundcloud to make sure your work stands out and finds the receptive audience you want.

Dec 11, 2018

Producers & Publishing

The beat of a song (the drum, digital, or other percussive "beat" that serves as a core element in the song) can sometimes be as important – or even more important, especially in EDM and hip-hop music – than lyrics or melody in making a song a hit. But when a beat is created by someone other than a songwriter, such as a producer, what rights do they have to publishing royalties or writing credits? The short answer is – it's complicated.

Nov 27, 2018

Five Questions to Ask Your Publisher

For many songwriters and musicians, the idea of signing a publishing deal is so exciting the only question they think to ask is, "Where do I sign?" However, it's worth it to take a deep breath and ask some questions that can ultimately have an impact on royalties, sync deals, and your entire career. Here are just a few questions you should consider asking your potential publisher before signing a deal:

Nov 15, 2018

How To Make The Most Out of Your Spotify Account

Spotify has become a wildly popular music streaming service – but for indie songwriters and musicians, figuring out how that popularity can profit them may not be so obvious. The good news is that streaming can mean real money – if you learn how to get the most out of it and treat it like a business. Here are some ways to make your Spotify account work for you as well as how to make sure you get the money owed to you once it does.

Oct 23, 2018

Top Four Reasons You Need Music Publishing

The act of creating music is a reward unto itself – but even the most evolved songwriters need to eat. While it can be a thrill to hear your music on Spotify or YouTube, it can be even more exciting to be compensated for your work every time someone listens to it. But reaping those rewards can seem like a daunting task to a songwriter – especially one who doesn't know the complex path to compensation. Here are the reasons every songwriter should have publishing.

Oct 18, 2018

Figuring Out Song Splits With Producers

Determining how to split songwriting credit is already a tricky business. Do you distribute credit equally among all members of a band, even if the lead singer wrote the main musical riff and the rest of the band only added simple accompaniment? What percentage does a guest artist who contributes a rap to an otherwise completed pop song receive? Things get even more complex when it's time to figure out the split for another key player in the creative process – the producer (or producers, as the case may be).

Sep 11, 2018

Top Apps For Songwriters

When you're on the road, it may not be so easy to grab a notepad and a pen to scribble down a song lyric, or find a piano to nail down the perfect chord. Maybe you have a service like Songtrust to send your playlists to PROs across the world, but you don't have an app to help with your daily budget. Never fear – here are just a few apps that can make life on the road (or just stuck driving between gigs) a little easier.

Sep 5, 2018

Top Six Ways to Get the Most Out of Your Live Performances

Live performances are such an important part of any artist’s career and knowing all the ways you can make money from them is vital. That means it's important to make sure you're getting the most out of each time you hit the stage, from selling merchandise to collecting royalties. Here are six tips for making sure every performance you make results in the most revenue it can:

Aug 9, 2018

What is Music Sub-Publishing?

It’s easy to assume that your Performing Rights Organization (aka PRO) has you covered whenever a song you’ve written is played anywhere in the world - and that’s mostly right. Whether your song hits the airwaves in Seattle or Hong Kong, you can expect that eventually royalties will be paid to you. But when your song is stored on a server, downloaded, or used as a ringtone somewhere far away, your PRO may not have a deal with the reproduction rights collective in that jurisdiction. That’s where sub-publishers come in.

Jun 14, 2018