License Your Music will help music producers, composers or artists to know the right licensing companies to work with to license their musical works.
The book is also useful for film producers or music directors or artist managers looking for songs or instrumentals to use.
We make it easier to locate these music licensing companies by clicking on the names.
‘License Your Music’ puts together the heavyweight music licensing companies that will assist you in getting your work out there or placing your musical work on Film or TV shows.
Ensure the quality of your sound is excellent and avoid distortion. Make sure your lyrics are universal to cover different plots.
As a composer or artist; take your time to listen to the soundtracks of great films so you can be familiar with what the sound should be like.
You will come across an offer like a music director looking for a song for a particular scene so there might be times you will need to change your lyrics or sound to suit the plot.
Best for an artist or composer is to own a recording studio you can use anytime because a finished song might have a limited opportunity and you might need to create a new musical work to meet up with this offer before the deadline for submission.
In fact, the best way is to first know what the music director is looking for and you now create your musical work to meet the goal.
Music licensing companies like Taxi, Music Gateway, Broadjam, Bandit A&R, Music Xray, and so on can be helpful for starters.
A DJ might license your song to remix it for sale, a music director might license it to use it as a soundtrack for a movie and an artist might license it to do the cover.
There are so many ways to derive income from music licensing. You make good money at a glance, unlike digital streaming.
Music licensing is a new source of income whereby an artist can license the use of his or her copyrighted music for a fee.
The fee depends on whether the purchaser of the music license will use the musical work for a non-commercial purpose or commercial purpose.
The fee for using a song for a commercial purpose is higher than a non-commercial purpose.
A purchaser of your music license has limited rights to use your musical work for commercial or non-commercial purposes depending on the license.
Music licensing is a serious business that is more profitable than streaming if an artist is fortunate enough to find a reliable Music Licensing Company or Publisher.
With licensing your music; you will come across granting of right in two categories: exclusive and non-exclusive.
Granting an exclusive right to a publisher means you cannot give the musical work to another publisher i.e. that publisher is the only one in charge of pitching the song.
Granting a non-exclusive right means you are still free to give the same musical work to another publisher.
But what you will get in monetary return in the granting of a non-exclusive right is very less compared to when you grant an exclusive right to a reputable publisher.
Working with a publisher or a music licensing company can be trickery so you need to research well. Avoid a long term contract if you are not sure of the publisher or licensing company.
Based on personal experience; I have few publishers that pay whereas there are many that I did not hear from them since submitting and granting the right. So be very careful about the publisher you want to grant the right.
There are a lot of factors to consider as it seems profitable to make money via music licensing. You need to have a PayPal account in case your publisher is not in the same territory.
The quality of your sound must be excellent because the publisher might place your song in a Film or TV Show; therefore, there must not be an issue with production.
Ensure you tag your songs and you can use the service of tag providers like TagTeam Analysis.
Tagging your music for music licensing is not the same as Meta Tagging. Here you need to state the title, description, tempo, genre, subgenre, moods, styles, cue type, featured instruments, vocals (male or female) and sounds like.
Be original in creating your musical works and avoid the use of samples.
Find out if the music publishers or licensing companies take songs already registered with a PRO because few of them do not take songs registered with a PRO (Performing Rights Organization) like ASCAP, BMI, and so on.
Ensure your song relates to the offer to reduce the rate of rejection. Read the requirement and know what the music director needs.
Focus on the offers similar to your musical works.
Do not pitch garbage and be sure you have something great to offer. Low quality or poorly recorded songs will not work for the music licensing even if the publisher approved.
Music licensing companies like Songtradr, Amurco, and Audiosparx offer digital distribution with music licensing.
Explore the music licensing companies to know the one that works for you.
An artist must ensure to copyright his or her musical works before engaging in music licensing.
In a layman’s view, let us assumed a buyer purchased your music license for a commercial purpose. The buyer can release your song for a commercial purpose and sell it online.
In this kind of situation, you will still get paid because there are other hidden royalties that your PRO will pay you as the songwriter, so you are not losing everything by granting someone to use or sell your song via music licensing. The buyer of your music license might even promote the song and make you more popular than you think.
Let us cite Dolly Parton’s song entitled ‘I Will Always Love You’ as Late Whitney Houston made the song more popular. It is just like a songwriter pitching songs out.
Income from music licensing can supersede the royalty you are getting from digital streaming if you are lucky.
Avoid working with a publisher with no record of success and do not be in a hurry to sign an exclusive contract with a new publisher or music licensing company.
Take note you have a full song and you have the instrumental. Separate the instrumental from the full song when granting right because an instrumental works for Film or TV shows while a full song works for artists seeking songs to record.
As many artists are springing up nowadays and bombarding streaming platforms with new songs daily; music licensing platforms remain the best means for artists to generate extra income.
– Olamide Ayodeji Kolade
Additional Requirement for Music Licensing:
Register your songs with a PRO.
You can only join one PRO so check the links below and go for one.
Register as a songwriter or register for both songwriter and publisher.
After the registration, you will be able to register your songs online with the PRO, you will be assigned CAE/IPI number and your songs will have a work number and ISWC number.
You must have an IPI Number assigned to you by your PRO.
Obtain an ISWC Number for your songs. ISWC (International Standard Musical Work Code) is a particular, permanent, and universally accepted ISO reference number for the identification of musical works. Note that ISRC is not the same as ISWC. You can get an ISWC via ISWC International Agency
ISWCs are generally assigned to musical compositions by music publishers and PRO societies.
ASCAP is the official ISWC issuance agency, but even if you are not a member of ASCAP you can get an ISWC.
You need to provide the details of the musical work such as the Song Title, Composers, Authors, and Arrangers with their role and their CAE/IPI number (assigned by ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC to songwriters and music publishers in the U.S.) to get the ISWC.
BMI has a system also and you only need to check online to find out if BMI has registered your songs fully.
Below are tools to find your ISWC online. The tools are also good for identifying the copyright owners of musical works.
You will need the accurate tag analysis of each song like the Description, BPM, Genres, Sub-genres, Similar Sound Like, Featured Instruments, Tempo, Vocals (Female/Male), Cue Type, Styles, Moods…You can consult service providers like https://tagteamanalysis.com/tag-your-music/