In this special episode of Composer Quest, I talk with entertainment lawyer Blake Iverson of Friedman Iverson Law Firm and entertainment law student Sarah Howes about how to copyright your music and make money from royalties. They provide a bunch of great tips and legal myth-busting for us composers and songwriters. Listen to our talk below for answers to these intellectual property questions that should probably be on your mind:
- How do I copyright my music?
- How can I get paid for radio play?
- If someone covers my song in a concert venue, can I get paid for that?
- How are Pandora and Spotify getting away with paying artists so little?
- When should I sign a record deal?
- If I collaborated on a song with someone, how do we create a contract to split the rights and royalty money?
- If someone infringes on my copyright, how can I sue them?
- If I can’t pay for a lawyer, what should I do?
- Is creative commons a good idea?
- How does public domain work?
- 100 years from now, will YouTube creators be able to pass on their monetized videos to their grandchildren?
- Should I mail a copy of my work to myself and never open it (“poor man’s copyright”)?
Here are links to some things Sarah mentioned in our talk:
- Pandora’s hidden agenda behind their Internet Radio Fairness Act
- Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts program in Minnesota and elsewhere (I was approved for this program, so you could be, too!)
- The Making United States Independents Competitive Act (with the convenient acronym MUSIC Act) would make it easier for independent artists and labels to attend music trade shows, etc.
More Composer Quest interviews await you…