Lloyd Remick, Esq. was Guest of Honor at a Navy-Marine ROTC Military Ball at the University of Pennsylvania. He told of experiences as an Army Officer during the CUBAN Missile Crisis and was well received! Mr. Remick was a ROTC cadet at Penn, before entering the military.
I was asked an interesting question about whether you need a copyright for a musical work and whether that’s the same for a musical recording, so let’s elaborate on the different kinds of copyright. There are two copyrights in a musical work: (1) copyright of a song and (2) copyright of a recording. A song, or what is referred to as a musical composition, consists of music, lyrics, etc., whereas a sound recording consists of a performer’s recording of a composition. To use a particular musical work, for example in a film or television show, you must obtain permission from both the owner of the copyright in the musical composition and the owner of the copyright in the sound recording. If you wish to reproduce a musical work, for example in a cover song, you only need to obtain permission from the owner of the copyright in the musical composition. That is because you are not reproducing the original performer’s sound recording, but rather creating your own recording of the composition, which you can then own and obtain copyright protection for that recording.
At the present time, the copyright rate of payment is approximately 9.1 cents to be split between the composer and the publishing company. Let’s make the math easier and assume it’s a dime or 10 cents just for sake of simplicity. If you were the sole writer and owner and a song sold 1 recording, you would be entitled the full 10 cents, 5 cents as the writer and 5 cents as the publishing entity. If there were 2 writers, the writers would be splitting the 5 cents of writer’s share, 2.5 cents and 2.5 cents. They could possibly split the publishing as well or depending on the deal negotiated not own the publishing share of 5 cents. And that is why you need to carefully understand and negotiate the splits. Don’t be too quick to assign the publishing share unless somebody is really helping you get your music out there or you are receiving an advance against the publishing that you are licensing or selling. More on this later.”
And that’s my random thought for the day. -Lloyd Z. Remick, Esq.
“My longtime friend, manager, business partner and attorney Lloyd Remick and I have put something very special together for you all. After 40 years of working together, Lloyd came to me with beautiful lyrics he had written that told the sorrowful story of a man’s one-time indiscretion, pleading for his love to ‘forgive and forget.’ I fell in love with it, so I produced and sang this song that we are sharing with you today. Now we want to know… what do you think?” – Bunny Sigler
I would like to speak generally about the circle and the team surrounding the entertainer or athlete. The first member of the team is the manager. In a general sense, what does the word “manager” mean to you? Webster’s dictionary defines the word “management” as follows: “Handle, control, to make and keep submissive, to treat with care, to alter by manipulation, to succeed in accomplishing, to direct or guide on business and affairs and lastly to achieve one’s purpose.”Some of that definition would be offensive to the artist-manager relationship, but you get the general understanding.
I look at management as doing all that it takes to enhance the endeavors of an artist’s career. In terms of sports, it’s like being the coach and quarterback of a football team at the same time; not only preparing the game plan, but calling the plays and seeing they are executed as well.
A personal manager is one, who for a fee, engages in the occupation of advising, counseling, and/or directing artists in the advancement of their professional careers, but who has no contractual obligation to procure or attempt to procure employment or engagements for artists. These services include assisting the artist in the creation and perfection of his/her act or performance, sometimes financing to tide the artist over the period before he/she obtains competence and public recognition to generate income in excess of his/her expenditures, to obtain the artists’ managers to procure employment … and to advise the artist in connection with his/her general business affairs, including arranging for accountants, lawyers, business managers, investment counselors, etc. To date, there are no licensing requirements regarding personal managers, as long as their services do not involve procuring employment. The personal manager is valuable to the artist because the manager possesses the business expertise necessary to advance the artist’s career.
The contract between the artist and the personal manager generally provides that the manager should have the exclusive right to represent the artist in an advisory capacity for the duration of the contract. The terms and length of the contract and the range of percentages will be covered in a subsequent blog.
The personal manager should be differentiated from the talent agent, the second member of the team, who will be discussed on the next blog entry. For a sneak peak, the talent agent’s services include procuring employment, i.e. getting concerts or “gigs,” sponsorships or endorsements. And that’s my random thought for the day.
- Lloyd Z. Remick, Esq.
So I’m sitting in my office, speaking to Kate O’Neill, my third-year intern who works with us, and she mentioned how some of her colleagues are so negative about the aspects of getting employment, and I likewise, have heard from some musicians and writers how tough the economy is; how hard it is to get their music played; how the record industry has changed; etc., etc., and it gave us pause for concern about the way you present yourself to others. So here’s some of our thinking. True, the advent of the Internet has undoubtedly changed the landscape of the music industry. The record industry has sharply declined, CD sales have plummeted, and the role of record labels has diminished. The traditional notion of going to a record store to buy your favorite album even for just that one song has been replaced by a 99 cent download on iTunes and streaming free music online. As a consequence, artists breaking into the industry and even established artists doubt their own success rate and the future of the industry itself. After all, the one-stop source of production, manufacturing, distribution, marketing, promotion, and overall support has taken a downward turn. Although the digital age has brought challenges, the good news is that it has equally brought many opportunities.
Today’s artists have more options than ever to release their music, and they can do so at a much lesser cost. Artists have the ability to reach consumers all around the world with the click of a button on the Internet. The key is building a brand and creating a buzz on the streets, either on your own (the cheapest way) or with the help of various technological companies that provide marketing and promotional services. Consumers today are more likely to buy an entire album because they are a fan of the artist, as opposed to his or her songs, which can be downloaded individually. Part of building a brand and creating a buzz also includes taking advantage of different income streams, such as merchandising and sync licensing.
The most important thing to remember is that it’s easy to give up, as it is with any change; those who succeed however, embrace the change, adapt to the times, and stay ahead of the game. With the Internet and its various resources, consumers are at your access. Get your music out there through YouTube, iTunes, and other websites; connect with fans via Twitter and Facebook; and don’t be afraid to challenge yourself to find new and creative ways to build your brand and create a buzz.
Above all, stay positive, good things happen to good people. And that’s my random thought for the day.
– Lloyd Z. Remick, Esq