Music Publishing 101: Webinar Recap

This week we held another webinar - Music Publishing 101 - to dive into the major themes of music publishing that may still be a bit confusing to songwriters and creators. Hosted by Songtrust's own Julia Pernicone, Publishing Operations Manager, CJ Olivieri, Client Acquisition Manager, and Kyle Thiede, Associate Director of Publishing Operations, we covered topics from publishing deals to understanding PROs, copyrights and royalties. The turnout was tremendous and those that attended asked a lot of excellent questions.

Jul 13, 2018

Financial Planning for Songwriters

Professional songwriters and musicians can potentially make more money today than ever before, however, that doesn't automatically mean they're going to be set for life. We've all seen the hard-luck stories of big stars who somehow wound up penniless after a series of setbacks. Over the years, how many top selling artists have declared bankruptcy - sometimes more than once - to manage debts that exceed their incomes?

Jul 10, 2018

What's The Deal With Black Box Royalties?

If the term black box royalties sounds a little ominous, it probably should. Black box royalties, or black box income, have become a blanket term for money – an estimated $2.5 billion – that is earned but never paid out to any artist. Finding a way to get it is, in many ways, like trying to locate a black box at the bottom of the sea – frustrating and overwhelming.

Jun 7, 2018

Songtrust's Music Publishing Glossary

The definition of a successful artist or songwriter is evolving. To thrive, you have to learn the business to make informed decisions. We know, perhaps better than most, that the music industry is flooded with acronyms and terms, probably a few hundred too many. Sometimes just adding a word to an existing term can create a whole new definition! As a part of our continued mission to help songwriters and rights holders become better business people through expert resources and explanation of the music business and music publishing industry, we’ve curated a collection of music industry, business, and publishing terms. Below are a few of the top ten commonly used industry terms and their definitions. Check out the Songtrust Glossary for our full list of terms and educate yourself on their definitions.

May 24, 2018

ISRC vs ISWC - What's the Difference?

The music industry is full of acronyms - ASCAP, BMI, IP and DSP are just a few. As a songwriter, you probably know about PROs (performance rights organizations) like ASCAP and BMI, but you may not know the terms ISRC or ISWC, or even what they mean – and that these two acronyms can have a major impact on collecting your royalties.  

May 22, 2018

The Truth About Advances

Like any new entrepreneur, songwriters may experience cash flow problems and look for additional financing to keep the lights on. However, unlike businesses that have inventory to put up as collateral, songwriters have only their intellectual property and the royalties that property can earn. This limits the options from traditional banking sources and requires songwriters to seek out alternative funding that’s available as an advance against royalties or from selling some rights in exchange for quick cash.

May 17, 2018

Songwriter Success: Webinar Recap

 Last month we held our first-ever webinar - Songwriters: Setting Yourself Up For Success - for new songwriters and those songwriters looking to refine their process. Hosted by Songtrust's own Elizabeth McBride, Publishing Specialist, and Adam Schwartz, Client Success Manager, we covered topics from the creative process and how to get yourself organized, to understanding publishing, PROs, and royalties. The turnout was tremendous and we were asked a lot of excellent questions from the community that tuned in.

May 16, 2018

Streaming Royalties Explained

Thanks to the internet, streaming has become one of the primary ways people listen to music, whether on their smartphones, at home, on their computers, or elsewhere – but that doesn't mean it's been easy for songwriters to sort out the process of getting paid for all that exposure. Royalty rates are set at a variety of different percentages, usually based on the digital service’s gross revenue for a period of time, and even industry pros and publishing execs who have been in the industry for decades can find themselves confused.

May 10, 2018

ASCAP, BMI, SESAC: The Guide to PROs

Songtrust works globally to collect songwriter's composition royalties from performing rights organizations and mechanical rights societies.

Performing Rights Organizations (aka PROs) are an important part of any songwriter's career – even when a songwriter doesn't realize it. While PROs collect royalties for songwriters when their works are performed publicly, such as played on television and AM/FM airwaves, through internet radio services like Pandora, at a club, inside a restaurant, or at a concert, most organizations don't stop there. Many tackle other issues impacting their members, such as fighting music piracy and keeping up with changes to the industry that have resulted from the advent of digital music. They advocate for artists and writers in their countries or origin, too. We strongly believe that it’s important for songwriters to learn about the PROs in their territory and around the world. Here's a quick overview of just some of the biggest players in the industry:

May 3, 2018