Music Publishing and Licensing Blog

Songs administration check list

This is a check list of free resources you can use to help you get started with organizing and managing your basic music publishing administration. You can do most of these yourself, but recommend that you consult with a qualified person for specific administrative and/or legal advice as needed.

Songwriter Split Sheet

Split sheets are an essential safeguard to ensure that you and each person you are co-writing with gets paid their fair percentage of publishing income. Use a Split Sheet to help you manage any songs you plan to create in collaboration with other songwriters, composers or contributing producers, etc.

Copyright Registration

U.S. copyright registration can be done via their online electronic Copyright Office System. Advantages include:

  • Lower filing fee of $35 for a basic claim (for online filings only)
  • Fastest processing time
  • Online status tracking
  • Secure payment by credit or debit card, electronic check, or Copyright Office deposit account
  • The ability to upload certain categories of deposits directly into eCO as electronic files
  • Available 24 hours a day, except for routine maintenance every Sunday from 12:00 midnight to 6:00 AM Eastern Time

Note: If you reside in other countries you will need to contact your local government copyright office.

Performance Rights Organizations

Most countries have one performance rights collection society, while in the U.S. there are three to choose from, though normally only one is needed per writer and/or publisher.
ASCAP

BMI
SESAC
Again, if you reside in another country, you’ll want to contact your local PRO. For example in Canada, it will be SOCAN and in the UK the PRS, etc.

Custom Music Quote Request Form

If you are involved with writing custom music for your clients, you’ll benefit from having a handy form on your website page for them to fill out. We’ve prepared a sample you can use as a template to create your own using a free google doc’s account. For a complete tutorial, please visit the Songs administration check list article.

Music Cue Sheet Form

You can set up a spreadsheet powered form, same as the custom music quote request form, to help your client’s record important usage of your songs in their broadcast media production projects. Use this Music Cue Sheet Form demo as a template to create your own.

Music Licensing Agreement Form

If you plan to include the works of other artists or composers in your catalog for licensing sales, you’ll benefit from having an agreement of your terms in writing for you to act as a sub-publisher on their behalf. The LQ Library store plan now has a music Submissions feature which includes a standard music license agreement you can review and use. Standard payments are 50%, but you can adjust this and edit the other terms as needed to best fit your music business model.

Other resources to be added here

If other resources appear which belong here, we’ll be sure to add them to this list. If you have suggestions or would like to contribute something we haven’t already covered, please use our Contact form to send us your message, thanks!

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