Business Smarts: Do You Own Your Masters?

by Angela D. Green, Esq.

(August 19, 2009) As an independent artist, you need to make sure that you own everything that you create. Your name, likeness, personality and the music that you create is all that you have to market and sell to the public.

Choosing the right recording studio for your project is an important decision to make. However, leaving that recording session as the owner of the masters is even more important. Request that the studio provide you with a Studio Agreement so that you know what services and goods are being offered, as well as what your costs will be to record in the studio.

This should be a Work-For-Hire arrangement with you owning the masters to the recording session. You can negotiate the best deal in the world with your studio; however, when it's all said and done, you get what you pay for. Most studios will not release any audio files until all debts have been paid in full. Therefore, make sure you are financially able to pay all recording fees.

The articles provided by Angela Green, Esq. are for informational purposes only, concerning general legal principles. You should consult your legal counsel for answers to specific legal questions.

Angela Green is an entertainment attorney in Memphis, Tennessee and part owner of Key II Entertainment, an artist management company.

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AIRPLAY 360 is a monthly published digital magazine designed to inform, empower and motivate independent inspirational musical artists by offering a soundboard of information provided by artists, producers, label executives and other industry professionals.
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