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Topic: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

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  1. #1

    Question Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Hi everyone,
    Have any of you sold to music libraries? I'm wondering how that works. Is each deal completely different? Did you get to keep rights/royalties from your song? Do they pay you? How much is average?
    Thanks for your help!

  2. #2

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Isn't that like selling your soul to the devil?

    Seriously, from my take on the various posts about this before, there is a negative feeling about doing this around the forum.

    I could be wrong though.

  3. #3

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Thanks Joseph. That's kinda what I'm thinking. (about selling your soul...) I consider my music as an extension of my soul, and I don't want to do the wrong thing. If I have to sign over all rights etc., I wouldn't want to do that because the music's a piece of me... I just don't know how it works - the A&R company that I have a membership to has a lot of offers from libraries.

  4. #4

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Companies that produce commercial production music usually require music that is timed to fifty-eight and twenty-eight seconds. They do use longer compositions for "industrial" voiceover backgrounds. They don't want any instrument to stand out because that would detract from the voiceover itself. Usually they go for nondescript music, the blander the better.

    If you don't want to someday hear your music behind a radio or TV commercial for a used car lot, I would pass on the library scene. I had a thirty-five year radio broadcasting career with decades of experience in the use of music production libraries.

    Regards,

    Larry Alexander
    Larry G. Alexander
    www.alexandermusic.com

  5. #5

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Quote Originally Posted by Joseph Burrell
    Isn't that like selling your soul to the devil?

    Seriously, from my take on the various posts about this before, there is a negative feeling about doing this around the forum.

    I could be wrong though.
    Music is essentially a commodity, like most other things, and the needs for it for various uses necessitate acquiring it from composers. As long as you're keeping some measure of the rights to your work, or are getting paid enough where you're okay to sell it outright, why not sell it if you can? Depends how it's being used, I suppose... I wouldn't sell my music to someone looking for music for their porno videos (I don't use enough wah wah, anyway ), and something like a beer commercial would be very iffy for me, but for most other uses I'd have no problem with having my music used, depending on the deal.
    www.EricHermanMusic.com
    - Cool Tunes for Kids -

  6. #6

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Quote Originally Posted by moviemaestro
    Thanks Joseph. That's kinda what I'm thinking. (about selling your soul...) I consider my music as an extension of my soul, and I don't want to do the wrong thing. If I have to sign over all rights etc., I wouldn't want to do that because the music's a piece of me... I just don't know how it works - the A&R company that I have a membership to has a lot of offers from libraries.
    I have actually been looking in to this - and have not yet reached any definite conclusions.
    From what I have seen though, you generally do not sign over your rights for the music. You retain the rights, and the licencing fee is split between the library and the composer. You also have the option of taking your music out of the library after a specified amount of time.

    I have no idea what libraries are actually 'good', and cannot vouch for the honesty of anyone..

    Most people here do not seem keen on them, but I know there are some who claim to earn a significant portion of their income this way.

  7. #7

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Thanks Larry,
    I wouldn't mind hearing my music in a commercial/on TV - I think that would be very cool! So I guess then that a good rule of thumb would be to not submit my best work to the libraries? Just bland stuff? That doesn't sound bad at all - as long as they pay me

  8. #8

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Ack, I am having a hard time constructing my thoughts on this one...

    I would say that if you can churn out run of the mill music that you don't mind losing creative ownership of, then go for it.

    Your creative artwork is better served for a private or more meaningful collection though.

    How's that?

  9. #9

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    Yes - that's what I mean. (I think) I'm wanting to get rid of the day-job and wonder if maybe libraries are the way to go for now anyway, for the music that is good, but doesn't have the type of "theme" etc. that could be built upon for a full score. I'm not sure if I can pay all of the bills this way though. What do they usually pay? Anyone know? Thanks all!
    Last edited by Stephanie Pray; 03-28-2005 at 12:55 PM. Reason: Forgot something...

  10. #10

    Re: Have any of you sold to music libraries?

    They will not pay enough to live off of. A good friend of mine does this on the side.

    The part that is hard for me to get over, is you completely lose ownership of the music. This is not good.
    Jess Hendricks
    DMA Student and Teaching Asst in Music Theory/ Composition at the University of Miami
    Personal Website

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