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Licensing Issues for Cover Songs (Disney/Muppets)

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  • Licensing Issues for Cover Songs (Disney/Muppets)

    Hey everybody,

    All my life, whenever I've released a cover song, I just go to the Harry Fox Agency website, hand over my credit card number and I'm done.

    I did a cover song from The Muppet Movie for a charity album, but the producers are telling me it's held up because they can't figure out who to contact at Disney about licensing. Apparently, the song I did isn't available for licensing through Harry Fox.

    (Maybe this could've been sorted out before the 3 months of recording work I did, yeah?)

    Anyhow, does anyone have any experience licensing a song from Disney or The Muppets? For that matter, does anyone have any experience with a song that wasn't licenseable through HFA?

    Thanks!
    <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.rhunekincaid.com" target="_blank">www.rhunekincaid.com</a></div>

  • #2
    You need to take it upon yourself and find out who the publisher is of the song. Then call the offices of that publisher until you reach someone. Then ask for the forms and info you need to send in your money because you have recorded and intend to release a cover version on your charity album. This is a compulsary license so they CAN NOT TURN YOU DOWN. It's 9.1 cents per song and usually they will give you a license for 1000 CDs or downloads so it should be $91. That's what I charge if someone wants a track of my music to put their vocals on and put it out.

    Comment


    • #3
      Once a song is reaeased to the public, you don't need the permission of the composer, lyricist and publisher on otdrt to release a cover.

      You fill out the song application form, fill in all IP owners, and you are done.

      No need to waste money to Harry Fox.

      Comment


      • #4
        Obtain a compulsory mechanical license. I.e. through a licensing agent such as the Harry Fox Agency or Limelight if you don't want to do it yourself.


        Do it yourself:

        Locate the copyright owner of the song. Check the Copyright office's records, or contact the publisher, ASCAP, BMI... for this information.

        Send the Notice to the copyright owner within 30 days of recording or distributing the song. Failure to do this violates copyright laws.

        When you obtain the rights to cover a song, you are able to rerecord your favorite songs and sell them or give them away free. According to U.S. Copyright law, anyone can legally record and/or distribute an original song by obtaining a compulsory license, also known as a compulsory mechanical license. The license allows you to manufacture and distribute copies of a song you didn't write, and ensures that the publisher and songwriter are compensated. You need the license even if you are not making money off the song. To obtain the license, pay the associated processing fees and royalties for each song.

        A compulsory mechanical license does not grant the rights to perform the song live.

        Very importnat is to print all IP owners on the cover, and on the CD - composer, lyricist, producer of the origial first release... just all persons which own IP on the song. Failing to do so, or even forgetting one IP owner, and they can demand your CDs are called back from the market and get destroyed.

        Comment


        • #5
          Do you know who wrote the song, and who is the publisher?
          _"We are currently experiencing some technical difficulties due to reality fluctuations. The elves are working tirelessly to patch the correct version of reality. Activities here have been temporarily disabled since the fundamentals of mathematics, physics and reason may be incomprehensible during this indeterminant period of instability. Normal service will be restored once we are certain as to what 'normal' is."

          Comment


          • #6
            Obtain a compulsory mechanical license. I.e. through a licensing agent such as the Harry Fox Agency or Limelight if you don't want to do it yourself.


            Do it yourself:

            Locate the copyright owner of the song. Check the Copyright office's records, or contact the publisher, ASCAP, BMI... for this information.

            Send the Notice to the copyright owner within 30 days of recording or distributing the song. Failure to do this violates copyright laws.

            When you obtain the rights to cover a song, you are able to rerecord your favorite songs and sell them or give them away free. According to U.S. Copyright law, anyone can legally record and/or distribute an original song by obtaining a compulsory license, also known as a compulsory mechanical license. The license allows you to manufacture and distribute copies of a song you didn't write, and ensures that the publisher and songwriter are compensated. You need the license even if you are not making money off the song. To obtain the license, pay the associated processing fees and royalties for each song.

            A compulsory mechanical license does not grant the rights to perform the song live.

            Very importnat is to print all IP owners on the cover, and on the CD - composer, lyricist, producer of the origial first release... just all persons which own IP on the song. Failing to do so, or even forgetting one IP owner, and they can demand your CDs are called back from the market and get destroyed.


            Right. I know what needs to be done, but I don't know who to buy the mechanical license from. Disney isn't represented through the Harry Fox Agency.

            The Publishers are:
            FUZZY MUPPET SONGS
            C/O WALT DISNEY MUSIC COMPANY
            C/O DISNEY MUSIC PUBLISHING
            500 S BUENA VISTA ST
            BURBANK, CA, 91521

            But I can't find any way to pay them. You can't just write to Disney and expect to hear back in this lifetime. That's what Harry Fox is for, just not for this song.
            <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.rhunekincaid.com" target="_blank">www.rhunekincaid.com</a></div>

            Comment


            • #7
              and you are where?

              and what is the song title?

              Comment


              • #8
                and you are where?

                and what is the song title?


                I'm in So. Cal, so I could drive there and stand outside the gate, but I don't see how that would help.

                The song title is "Can You Picture That?"
                <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.rhunekincaid.com" target="_blank">www.rhunekincaid.com</a></div>

                Comment


                • #9
                  I'm in So. Cal, so I could drive there and stand outside the gate, but I don't see how that would help.

                  The song title is "Can You Picture That?"


                  I call them tomorrow and give you the number of the person who can give the information you need

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I call them tomorrow and give you the number of the person who can give the information you need


                    That would be great!
                    <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.rhunekincaid.com" target="_blank">www.rhunekincaid.com</a></div>

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Walt Disney World Media Relations
                      Michelle Baumann
                      (407) 397-6397


                      If she can't help you, let me know.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Walt Disney Music Publishing
                        3800 West Alameda Ave.
                        Burbank, CA 91505

                        (818) 560-1000

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Right. I know what needs to be done, but I don't know who to buy the mechanical license from. Disney isn't represented through the Harry Fox Agency.

                          The Publishers are:
                          FUZZY MUPPET SONGS
                          C/O WALT DISNEY MUSIC COMPANY
                          C/O DISNEY MUSIC PUBLISHING
                          500 S BUENA VISTA ST
                          BURBANK, CA, 91521

                          But I can't find any way to pay them. You can't just write to Disney and expect to hear back in this lifetime. That's what Harry Fox is for, just not for this song.

                          This is as I suspected when I asked about the author/publisher...when Disney bought out Henson's catalogue, they got almost all his publishing and put it 'under their skirt'. They are extremely protective of their 'IP', btw; I know several people over at the 'Rat Trap' (they like to call it the 'Mouse House'), ... used to do a lot of work with them when I was in the industry. Most of my contacts are on the TV, film, and web divisions now, so see if Einstein's contact works out; if not, come back and I will see if I can possibly open a back door for you...no guarantees, but you never know.
                          _"We are currently experiencing some technical difficulties due to reality fluctuations. The elves are working tirelessly to patch the correct version of reality. Activities here have been temporarily disabled since the fundamentals of mathematics, physics and reason may be incomprehensible during this indeterminant period of instability. Normal service will be restored once we are certain as to what 'normal' is."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            the number in Burbank works,

                            and Rachel is connecting you to the music publishing dept.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I got through to someone on that Burbank number and passed it on to the producer, but a back door would be rad. I don't want my cover to go to waste. I spent 3 months on it.
                              <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.rhunekincaid.com" target="_blank">www.rhunekincaid.com</a></div>

                              Comment



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