Licensing a piece of music requires some, or all, of these clearances:

  • Synchronization Rights: Permission to use an underlying composition in your video project. Sync rights are obtained from the publishers who represent writers (composers and lyricists) or their heirs. Many licenses require syncs from multiple publishers representing different writers, and each must be separately negotiated and contracted.
  • Master Rights: Permission from the owner of the sound recording to use that specific recording. A popular song may have dozens of different master recordings, each controlled by a different record label, library or independent artist.
  • Performer Rights: Permission from the artist(s) who performed on that master recording is also required. Record companies are including tougher language in their contracts to assure union payment obligations are adhered to.

The TEAM Companies are well-versed and well connected in the music business and our music experts will:

  • Determine which of the above permissions are needed for your project
  •  Advise on applicable clearances based on your music budget
  •  Research and ascertain the sync and master rights owners
  • Negotiate accurate and favorable licenses and fees
  • Make sure agreements are airtight and protect the Licensee
  • Advise on SAG-AFTRA and AFM requirements
  • Contract with the artists for the rights to use their performance

If your music choice for your creative is bigger than your budget, The TEAM Companies can:

  • Search for a different master recording from a lesser-known Artist that still fits your creative vision
  • Negotiate with the star to re-do the song especially arranged for your project (eliminating the need for a master license)
  • Recommend a range of music libraries that offer high caliber Needle-drop recordings that provide both the sync and master permissions and are free from royalties and talent payments
  • Recommend a music production company or independent artist to record a new master or original composition created as a Work-for-Hire or licensed for substantial savings

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