Music Licensing and Re-Title Publishing, Pump Audio…

Who is this man?! Why is he on this site?!

Read below to find out…

We’ve been having a very interesting and informative dialog in the comments section regarding re-title publishing.

Re-title publishing is when a company re-registers your songs under a different name with a performing rights organization (ASCAP, BMI, etc), so they can license your music and collect a percentage of the publishing royalties, and track these royalties separately from any other licenses you may have given out for these particular songs.

Check out the comments section of a previous post on Re-Title Publishing, where you can read the opinions of someone who claims to own a re-title music publishing company. He argues that re-titling is a decent option for bands that don’t have endless hours of time to spend promoting their songs to online music libraries and music supervisors. His particular company seems to promote their catalog actively, spending money to create promo CDs, edit tracks, etc., which you certainly aren’t going to get from a fully-automated web service.

It’s an option.

Continue reading “Music Licensing and Re-Title Publishing, Pump Audio…”

Re-Title Publishing – Update

Last week I wrote a post about “re-title publishing”, and how I couldn’t really find much information on it. Which was part of the problem. Today I talked to the CEO of a popular music licensing service and he explained in detail why this practice isn’t great for artists and that it’s not industry standard.

What Re-Title Publishing is…

A company actually changes the titles to your songs and registers them with different names under THEIR publishing company. For example, if you have a song called “My favorite day is Tuesday.” They might rename it “Tuesday is my favorite day,” and register it under Douchebag Publishing with ASCAP or BMI, etc. You split the upfront licensing fees, and since they’ve published it under their own company, that entitles then to some or all of the backend revenue, which is what is generated whenever that movie, TV show or commercial is re-aired in the future.

Why It’s Lame

1) You get less money – whereas most licensing companies split the upfront fee with you and you keep ALL your future publishing earnings, this means you lose a percentage of those backend dollars.

2) It’s harder for listeners to find your music – If your song’s name was changed so some company could license it to a movie, people watching that movie are going to search for it by its new title. And because the only place in the universe it appears under that title is in the movie, they will have a harder time finding, and buying, the song.

Who Does It?

Granted, earning some money is usually better than earning no money. But there are plenty of companies that don’t require re-title publishing, if it ruffles your feathers or raises your eyebrows as it does mine.

Pump Audio is one of the big names in licensing that does re-title publishing. So, consider yourselves warned!

Re-Title Publishing – Is it Legitimate?

I recently submitted music to a licensing opportunity via Sonicbids, and was psyched to see that it was “selected” by the licensing company. But I was thrown by this statement: “Please send a disc of tracks that are clear for licensing and re-title publishing.” I have no idea what “re-title publishing” means, and could not find much mention of it anywhere. I flipped open my copy of All You Need to Know About the Music Business by Donald Passman, and there was no mention of it there either. So I emailed Don, and he claims no knowledge of “re-title publishing.” Which has me worried. If the expert who wrote the industry standard book hasn’t heard of it, can it possibly be legit?

Am I Just Paranoid?

If any of you are familiar with this concept, please post something in the comments. I’m going to call the company and get some details. My google searches did return some info on “sharking” songs, where publishers in the old days used to change the names of songs and register them again, so that they could claim the share of licensing that originally went to the artist. Not that this is the case in this instance, but I don’t want to get screwed.

Help, anyone?