Keeping Music In Sync

Keeping Music In Sync

By: Kyle White

There are all types of music licenses available, allowing artists work to be used in various media applications, including; films, TV commercials and programs, video games, radio adds, documentaries and other public media projects. Licensing music has the potential to generate new revenue streams for all the music you create. For example, CD Baby has partnered with Rumblefish, a pioneer in the world of music licensing, to make songs available for sync licensing. You’ll get paid every time a consumer or creative professional uses your work as part of a soundtrack or film/TV project. Then there’s YOUTUBE. YouTube is now the world’s most popular online music-discovery tool. For younger fans, it’s the preferred platform for listening to music, and thousands of people are realizing the commercial benefits of loading their work online.

Before we go any further, let’s review what sync licensing actually is and how it works.

What is sync licensing? In order for someone to legally use your song in their TV show, commercial, film, video game, or YouTube video (a process called ‘synchronization’), they need to acquire a license from you first. As the rights holder, you charge money for the license, and through administration companies {like CD Baby} all the work is handled and all you have to do is collect the checks.
How does sync licensing work? When you decide to begin offering your music for license, the admin company will begin making solicitations through various networks of sync licensing partners, as well as make the music available directly to film makers, music supervisors, content creators, and game designers.
Why should I license my music? The demand for independent music in film, TV, YouTube, and video games has erupted and there’s no sign of slowing. Offering original music for licensing opens the door to new revenue streams and possible creative opportunities beyond the traditional studio session or live show.
How much does it cost to license my music? Nothing. In come cases, admin companies will have registration fee’s, but they usually take a portion of royalty proceeds at the time of licensing, but that’s money paid only after the music is contracted for actual sync applications.

So the new question is, what are you going to do with all that music piling up in the iTunes folder labeled “misc.” ? Who knows, that sound bite you created last summer might be perfect for a new movie, or that 30 sec riff you recorded with a friend would be an ideal compliment for the new VW commercial. The sky is the limit, but not until you pull those tunes down of the electronic shelf and get them out there! I have a buddy who created a 15 sec sound bite recently, and even though you wouldn’t know it, it’s been playing all summer for a major restaurant chain. All things considered, he spent about 2 hrs. with the riff, the download and registration, and subsequent approval for the sync license…. Which a lot less time than he spends riding his new Wave Runner he bought with the royalty check! So, next time you see a commercial, watch a film or listen to a radio add, remember – somebody wrote that tune!

Good luck and Good Writing.

August 5, 2013