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2018 MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards – voting open


04/10/2018
Music

Copyright – some things you should know

11/09/2015

Copyright – some things you should know

We are often approached by our clients with requests for information on the subject of copyright and / or publishing royalties.
When releasing a single, EP or album, it is obviously important that you comply with the law surrounding these issues.
Here are a few of the more common questions we are asked with a bit of (hopefully) helpful information in reply to each point.
Please note that, to avoid repeating the options, we have assumed that the product being produced is a CD album.

“What is MCPS?”.
MCPS stands for the Mechanical Copyright Protection Society. The society represents the mechanical rights of its members (composers, songwriters, publishers). When one of its members’ works is recorded and reproduced as a physical product such as CD, vinyl, cassette etc., MCPS will collect the due royalties and pass these payments on to the member(s).
The society administers a range of licences depending on the type of release.
If you plan to release a CD album, for example, you must apply to MCPS for the appropriate licence.

“How do I do that?”
You first register with MCPS so that they can supply you with an account number and log-in details enabling you to access the online application form. The most common licence used is called an AP2. You will be asked to provide a number of details such as artist name, album title, quantity to be manufactured and, most importantly, a list of the track titles and, if known, the composers and publishers for each. Don’t worry if you don’t have all of the requested information – supply as much information as you can and the MCPS database will almost certainly fill in the blanks. You will also be asked to confirm the selling price for the album, as any royalties payable are based on a percentage of the selling price. This can be either the “Retail Price”, i.e. the price you intend to sell the album for direct at your performances or the “Dealer Price” – this is the unit price which a shop would pay to purchase copies.

“Do I have to pay royalties on all the CDs produced?”
No, on the first pressing of any album, you are entitled to claim a “promotional” allowance of 25%, up to a maximum of 250 units. Royalties are not charged on these copies, but there are certain conditions attached to this, most notably that the promotional copies must be clearly marked as such and that they must not be offered for sale.

“What if I / we wrote all the songs on the album?”
If all the material on the planned release is original, and has not been published, then MCPS will have no claim in respect of royalty payments. However, you must still submit a licence application to confirm that no royalties are due. If this is the case, then MCPS will issue a “Notification of No Claim”, confirming that you are not liable for any royalty payments.
The same will apply if the recorded material is in the Public Domain (exempt from royalty payments as the composer has been dead for at least 70 years).

“Do I need a new licence if I ask for more CDs to be made in future?”
Yes, you must provide a licence to cover every CD manufactured. MCPS will supply a “re-press licence application” form when the original licence is issued. This is a simpler form to be used when more discs are required.
Please note, this doesn’t apply if you were issued with a “Notification of No Claim” for your first order of the album in question. So long as none of the circumstances have changed (none of the songs / tunes have been assigned to a publisher since the original pressing), then the “No Claim” will cover as many discs as you want to press.

For more information check out these links:
http://www.prsformusic.com/users/recordedmedia/Pages/default.aspx
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mechanical-Copyright_Protection_Society#cite_ref-2
http://www.fairwagelawyers.com/most-famous-music-copyright-infringment.html

Music

Esme’s Adventure Beats Charity Target, And Then Some!

17/07/2015

 

Esme’s Adventure Beats Charity Target, And Then Some!

 

Esme Morris Macintyre sadly passed away in 2013 at the age of 18 after battling a brain tumour. A tribute CD, Esme’s Adventure, was created with contributions from many of Scotland’s top harp players, and a fundraising page was set up on the Just Giving website. The original goal of this fundraising campaign was £10,000, with all money being donated to the Teenage Cancer Trust. At the time of publishing this post, that fundraising page has amassed £22,855. A massive well done to everyone involved!

 

Esme wrote a searingly honest account of the challenges she faced through her Facebook page, facebook.com/EsmesAdventure, and she worked tirelessly to raise funds for the Teenage Cancer Trust.
She made a wish list of people to meet, things to do and for harp tunes to be written for her. The result is Esme’s Adventure, demonstrating the great diversity and talent that abounds in Scotland’s harp community today. It is a fitting tribute to a remarkable teenager and is being sold in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust.

 

The Just Giving page is still active and accepting donations. Please consider donating to this wonderful cause. Esme’s Adventure is available from our shop. All profits from the sales of this CD are being donated to the Teenage Cancer Trust.

Live Music

Mairi Orr’s Album Launch

25/06/2015

Mairi Orr’s Edinburgh Album Launch

 

On Saturday the 20th of June, I attended the first launch concert for Mairi Orr’s debut album Jenny Does Burn along with Martin and a very eager friend of mine. I say that it was Mairi’s first launch concert as the singer held a second on the 28th of June in Glasgow. The concert we attended was in Edinburgh at The Voodoo Rooms, a venue I had never visited before, but one that I fell in love with straight away. The concert was in a cosy room covered in dark drapes and illuminated by candles burning from each table as well as tiny lights dotted around the coverings. It was a very friendly and welcoming atmosphere.

Mairi and her band elected to do a straight run-through of the album for their live set. Opening number The Drover gently lulled the audience into the evening. Don’t You Wed Another Man Maggie took things up a notch with its fast-paced brand of bluegrass. Title track Jenny Does Burn told the tale of the last woman to be burned as a witch in Scotland to an oddly charming tune, given the subject matter. By the end of the set, and subsequently the album, Mairi had very effectively demonstrated her grasp of a variety of genres with no song sounding like the one before it.

Following rapturous applause from the audience (and then some), the band returned for a rendition of Dirk Powell’s take on traditional song Moonshiner. Feet were tapping, hands were clapping, it was a great concert from start to finish.

Mairi’s debut album Jenny Does Burn is available now from Birnam at our own shop, Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com. It is also available digitally through prominent platforms such as iTunes, Amazon MP3 and Google Play.