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If I wrote songs with someone and then parted ways and the songs are copyrighted, should I have to sign a release form If he asks? He hired a bunch of musicians to play on the songs and paid them a fee. Since I am the co-writer, is there any reason I would want to sign a 'release form' if he asks me to? Hope that makes sense

Clifford Hritz Tuesday 04 Dec 2007 I don't really understand the release form unless your friend is wanting you to give up your rights to the song. You would need to ask an attorney about this sort of thing. If you own even 1/2 of a copyright song, you are entitled to 1/2 of the earnings no matter if the other person is hiring others to sing the song. If it makes money you are still the co-writer and co-owener. If you sign a release you are giving up ownership it would seem. Without seeing the release form, we can only speculate. Still seek professional advise from an attorney before you give away the bank.

How does one evaluate a good producer and what variables should a singer look for in a producer and weed out fakes and so called wanna be producers? How does one know if a producer is legit or not?

Laurie Walls Thursday 29 Nov 2007 I hear this a lot. Many times it is all about the money. Some are fake. I knew many of them in LA. I did not think in those days that I would be one, but with 20 years in the entertainment field, it was bound to happen. Are you looking for a big time producer? Today, indies are having the time of their lives with YouTube and the other promotional sites. The big producers single out just a few talents they push and so many great talents go un-noticed. You have to go with your gut feelings on many things. Have you ever walked into a room and wish you were somewhere else? Or went to shake someone's hand and had a funny feeling about them. That is your gut telling you the truth. What is a wanna be producer? We have people out there who believe in talent and want to promote people but are not the big time producers you would hope for. Don't judge a book by its cover. I would be more leary of the fake producers. These are leaches that claim they are somebody and will do great things at a cost. If they want to charge you for something, you need to know what it is and why. Legit or not? What is the track record for the Producer. Talk to others, investigate. If I go to a doctor, I check them out, so why not check out a Producer? It is your right to do so.

DEAR SIRS, I WAS A WRITER/KEYBOARDIST FOR A BAND SIGNED WITH A LARGE LABEL A FEW YEARS AGO. I WAS PAID MY WRITERS ROYALTIES IN A TIMELY AND ACCURATE MANNER.IN 2005, THE SAME ALBUM WAS RE-RELEASED BY ANOTHER COMPANY WHO LICENSED THE RIGHTS TO REDISTRIBUTE FROM UNIVERSAL MUSIC. I JUST DISCOVERED THE RE-RELEASE. I HAVE NOT RECEIVED ANY WRITERS ROYALTIES FROM EITHER COMPANY. WHO SHOULD I PURSUE FOR MY ROYALTIES: THE FIRST LABEL OR THE COMPANY WHO LICENSED IT FROM THEM. YOUR KNOWLEDGE WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED. WARMEST REGARDS, TIM SHARPTON

TIM SHARPTON Thursday 22 Nov 2007 I would be in contact with both sources. It appears that a re-release by another compay even that they have the licensed rights to redistribute the music they would obligated to pay for the royalities. This is a topic for an Attorney. I would ask to see the contracts and release forms. I feel that you are due money since it is your work. It could be re-leased a zillion times, but it is ultimately your work. Did you copywrite the music under your name or jointly as a band? Did someone sell you out? Worth investigatation.

My question is what advice would you give this 46 year old man as far as getting signed to a major label. How much "Age" is the factor in this regard for any one interested in this business. Thank You Sirs .... Steven Patrick

StevenPatrick Sunday 26 Aug 2007 Major Labels are geared for youth. I tell you this from experience. Don't be down hearted because you can do it yourself. Become an Indie. Corporate American doen't hire you after 45, why? Simple, the hidden truth is because of age discrimination. Age is a big factor in entertainment more so than anywhere else. You can still gain work in entertainment if you are good and have some exceptional skills, but you will need to market yourself or find a local management firm that can promote you. Why is a major label so important? They have the money to get you to your destination much quicker. Record Labels want youth. I read the Demographics done for the Media. They only rank ages up to 54 - which means that no one after that age counts in their eyes. I find that very discriminating and insulting. I feel that Life starts again at 50. Go Indie, it is the easy way to go. You can sell your tunes as easy as anyone else. You may find a not so big producer willing to take a chance if you have real exceptional talent.

I have noticed that almost every singing entertainer in the business writes their own songs or is with someone who writes original songs. How do I make a cd for example as a tribute to Johnny Cash or Merle Haggard or just an assortment of great established songs that were not written by me? How do I do that without getting into copyright problems? Thanks. Joe

Joe Wednesday 23 May 2007 Joe, A copyright attorney could best tell you this answer. I write my own work, so I have not had to deal with other peoples copyrights. When performing works or an assortment of works from other artist you will need to register with BMI or ASCAP to pay royalties. If you are doing a unique assortment mix that you made up using some of their established songs, I believe that if you are different enough you should be safe. They have great entertainment attornies online that you could ask this sort of question to. When it comes to legal issues, I let the guys who have the degree in law handle these matters.

I have an Audio engineering questions. I would like to your opinions on using "doubles" on a track; can they be used througout the entire song, or only parts of the song? Is there a 'general rule of thumb' as to where they should be used and when they are the most effective? Also, what is your advice when it comes to harmonies. What is the "technique" used in audio engineering to make them sound 'tighter' so they don't sound like a background vocal?

Mark Healey May 20th 2007 I do not get what you are meaning about doubles on a track. I like my tracks to be clean, so I can remix later. If you layer too much on one track you are stuck with it. Harmonies can be faded into the background if you have a good mixer.

WHICH COMES FIRST ON THE MIX DOWN: REVERB, COMPRESSION, EQ, DELAY?

SHAFIQ SHABAZZ May 20th 2007 EQ I leave the compression for last.

How does one make an earned living as a lyricist? Also, how can someone get their songs published?

Jimmie Lee May 20th 2007 Do you also write the music? If not you would need to team up with someone who can. Copyright your work. Try getting someone or a band to record your work, create Demos, send them to Record Companies or produce them yourself and become a indie producer online. Many people are doing that today.

How do i find a good manager/agent?

Jason 2007-04-16 If they charge you for anything up front. RUN LIKE CRAZY. Find out who else they manage. Check out their website. Do you like the people they have on their site? See what is involved - what percentage are they wanting. More than 15% is TOO much. What types of jobs do they get? If it is all weddings are you happy with that? If is smoked filled bars, are you happy with that? What do you have that is special for them to market? Go interview them as they are interviewing you. Read everything before you sign.

how do I send my Demo to a label company?and how do you know wich one is reliable?

Nathalie-joan Limon 2007-03-25 You don't know. You could send out a hundred demo's before the right person touchs it. If you can place it in their hands, this is a better guarentee that would listen to it. Remember there are hundreds trying to break into the music business everyday. You need to have something really unique that will stand out above the crowd to be noticed. Other wise your efforts are going into the circular files. Google the Record Labels you want to send to. Call or write to find out who you need to send your demo to. Try to send a recent head shot and cover letter with the Demo. Keep it short but interesting. Good luck.

What advice do you have for singers, who want to improve there voice in singing?

Darleen 2006-12-17 Try a variety of songs. Test your range. Try other venues. See what makes a good fit but be willing to go the extra mile. The more songs you know the more valuable you become. It is not the quantity of songs that a singer knows that makes them so valuable as it is the quality. Practice, Practice, Practice. Don't blow out the voice. It is nice to show you are loud but at the cost of your vocal cords that isn't wise. Tape yourself singing, have your worst critics watch your tape and give you tips. You have to have a tough skin while you are learning to improve, but it will be worth it in the long run. Practice, Practice ---- did I say Practice? That is the key word for today and everyday. Never stop testing your range and holding notes. Sing in the shower, in the car, in the elevator. Everywhere you go.

I want to start a home recording studio.Kindly guide as to what is the cheapest or free way to do so.

Sanjeev Ghotgalkar 2006-12-05 There is not a FREE way that I know of. Everything cost money today unless someone gives you the software and computer to get started. You can start your own small business with a computer a good mixer program and a great microphone. None of these are free but it is the cheaper way to get started.









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