Mechanical licenses

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by JollyJake, Sep 20, 2006.

  1. JollyJake

    JollyJake Guest

    Hey all,

    I'm going to be recording a small gospel CD soon. It will be for our Church and various congregations - there will be around 500 copies made.

    The projects length will be about 40 - 45 minutes (Not sure since we are still in the planning process).

    My Dad recorded a CD (For our Church, same deal - small) a while ago and he thinks that all I need is the authors permission to record the song.

    He just called Triple Disc and they said all they require is an email giving you permission to use their song. While that would be nice (Not to mention free), I was under the impression that once an author of a song signs up with a publisher and copy rights the song that he is not at liberty to give you permission to use the song.

    I still think that we have to get a mechanical license for each song.

    Who is right?

    Jolly Jake

    EDIT: An additional question: what do you think are the chances of getting a song mec license for free?
  2. pmolsonmus

    pmolsonmus Well-Known Member

    Jun 23, 2003
    Easiest place to check who owns what is the songfile search at Harry Fox
    It also spells out whens, wheres and hows of mech licensing.

    If it is not currently licensed or copyrighted and/or in another's hands then I think (don't sue me if I'm wrong) that the songwriter would have the option to charge or give away the license to record. Once its published, purchasing the sheet music for it DOES NOT give you permission to record without paying mech lic.
    However, once its published, you don't have to ask permission, you just have to pay.

    It is quite easy to get mechanical license, especially for a school/church via the Harry Fox website and the rates are still less than .10/unit.

    So... if you're recording the songs yourself, the CDs, labels and jewel cases should run you less than $1/unit, 10 songs would cost you less than $1/unit. You could make $8 on every Cd you sell for $10. That means 500 Cds makes you $4,000 or more if you can sell for more.

    I record a holiday Cd at my school every year and we've used this process to fundraise quite a bit.

    Good Luck

  3. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Feb 10, 2001
    Music royalties

    Also check with the performing rights organization the artist is with. You will need either a cumpulsatory liscense or a negotiated liscense.
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