charging by the song

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by mud5150, May 30, 2006.

  1. mud5150

    mud5150 Guest

    So I'm finally moving in to a place where I will be able to setup my gear and record on a regular basis. I'm planning to start taking clients once I get used to my new surroundings. Here is the dillema I have a "real job" and I'll prob try and schedule tracking on my days off and I can mix in the evening on top of this I'm a single dad with a toddler so I could be interupted at any time. With all this it would be impossible to charge any kind of daily or hourly rate. So I was thinking of charging by the song. The only obvious drawback is that I might end up making $2 an hour, but this is ok. I want to spend as much time on my work as possible since I'm just starting out so once I have a decent library of stuff I've recorded I can move the price up to a decent wage. My main question is is there anything else that could totally screw me in this situation. Obviously if I was doing some kind of jam band that has a 20 min song I will work that out on an individual basis. Tell me your horror stories if there are any. Thanks
  2. MadTiger3000

    MadTiger3000 Active Member

    Nov 16, 2004
    Firstly, I admire you for your ambition.

    Jam bands will be fine. Live setups, with very few overdubs, remember.
  3. MilesAway

    MilesAway Guest

    I run my studio in a "pay-by-the-song" system and so-far, so-good. I charge $75/song which, depending on the band generally ends up working out to between $15-$20/h.
    This works well if:
    a) You love what you're doing.
    b) You are NOT trying to make a living recording
    c) You don't mind working with the younger, less-experienced bands this system seems to attract.

    I have a few clauses in my studio contract to keep bands from holding me hostage over the pay-by-the-song system that you can see here:

    1. Client agrees to pay to Studio the rate of $75 per song.
    1a) Services included in this rate:
    i) All tracking of instruments and vocals
    a. Once tracking of an instrument has been completed, it is considered finished and Studio is not responsible for any time or costs incurred retracking said instrument in the future.
    b. Instruments may be retracked at the rate of $20/h
    ii) All equiptment rentals nessesary to complete the project
    iii) All media costs required for the project
    iv) All editing and mixing sessions
    1b) Services not included in this rate:
    i) Mastering of final mixes
    ii) Printing, Duplication, Artwork, Design

    2. Additional charges of $20-per-offense may be incurred under the following circumstances:
    i) Client is more than 20-min late for a session
    ii) Client fails to provide 48h notice before canceling a session
    iii) Client is unprepared for the session.

    In such cases, all sessions will be suspended until payment has been received.

    3. Client shall make payment to Studio as follows:
    i) payment due prior to first session
    ii) payment to be made in cash

    4. Studio shall endeavor to secure all recording media owned by Client, and left or stored on the studio premises, but Studio shall not be responsible for loss or damage to any of the above.

    5. At Studio’s discression, the project may be terminated at anytime with a 30% refund and all materials recorded thusfar being returned to Client under the following circumstances:
    i) Client is frequently unprepared for sessions
    ii) Client is frequently unable to complete sessions
    iii) Client is obviously unmotivated and/or unwilling to complete the project within a reasonable timeframe
    iv) Client frequently misses and/or cancels sessions without 48h notice.
  4. Jeremy

    Jeremy Active Member

    Aug 9, 2005
    From LV but Army brought me to TN
    I do charge by the track. It helps keep tension down, where musicians have to quickly do parts as per limited funds. I like to keep the stress down to a min. I do however get burned when it comes to mixing, and such. I do like Miles pay-by-the-song format, I might have to incorporate some of it.

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