Category: Final Note (Archive)

Composers Could Learn A Lot From The Writers Guild

I have a lot of respect for the Writers Guild of America writers who went out on strike last week. While the strike has already shut down many shows and delayed the planned midseason start of others, composers could learn a lot from the writers. Form a union, or the next best thing. Composers, saddled […]

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The Business of Buyouts

The 2007 AFM Convention is over and the musicians’ union has re-elected the current President (Tom Lee). But the AFM President has a long way to go to heal the gaping chasm that has developed within the AFM between recording musicians, especially those in LA, and the rest of the union. There are major differences […]

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Yes, We Can Talk

Last month’s historic meeting of the AFM President Tom Lee, AFM Local 47’s John Acosta and the New Era Scoring buyout reps in Los Angeles proved a very important point: once all the heated rhetoric, anonymous blog sniping and election fodder is removed from the AFM situation, there definitely is room for professionals to talk. […]

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No More Free Music For U.S. Movie Theatres

The latest discussion by record industry about seeking performer’s royalties (royalties paid to labels and artists) from radio stations brings to mind a similar situation that composers in this country have to deal with – the blatant public for-profit use of film music while a legal “exception” prevents our collectives – ASCAP and BMI, specifically, […]

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Film vs TV 2.0 and What It Means for Composers

We’re now fully into the season of the sequels, otherwise known as the summer movie season. And that’s got me thinking about film vs. television. Sequels of films are not all that unlike episodes of a hit television series, where the audience gets to know an ensemble of actors and looks forward to their next […]

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Why So Few Agents?

I’ve been thinking this week about the severe shortage of film and television music agents. With so many composers in the business, admittedly an oversupply, and an expanding amount of programming that needs both licensed and original music and scoring, it seems to me that the professions of “composer agent” or “song licensing rep” would […]

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The Real Victims of the AFM Civil War

This week’s actions at Local 47 are only the latest in a long-running battle between LA recording musicians and the AFM national administration. While the battle of whether the AFM should offer a buyout contract for recording work has raged on, the industry has chosen to move a large amount of recording work for low […]

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To Buyout or Not To Buyout?

For years, LA recording musicians have been losing a major amount of film & TV recording work to other locales including Seattle and Europe for one primary reason: the AFM has refused to provide a buyout scale for companies that have chosen to record their music on a buyout (pay once, no future payments) basis. […]

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Who’s Looking Out After Your Financial Interests?

As a good friend at one of the performing rights organizations (PROs – ASCAP, BMI and SESAC) mentioned this week, there is a great deal at stake over the next 18 months when it comes to music royalties. I believe that now, more than ever, as composers and songwriters it is incumbent upon all of […]

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Why Does the ASCAP Board Not Want You To See Their Attendance Records?

That’s a very good question. As you can read in today’s Film Music Magazine news story, it has now been confirmed that the ASCAP Board of Directors voted down a proposal that would have let ASCAP members know the board meeting attendance records of the incumbent Board members at election time, so ASCAP members can […]

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ASCAP, BMI, SESAC and Free Music

While the old Napster involved lots of kids and students getting music without compensation paid to the writers and publishers, it’s quite a different situation when highly profitable companies such as television networks and radio stations are allowed to use huge amounts music legally and the writers and publishers of this music receive no share […]

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The Beginning of the End of Performance Royalties for Film & TV Music?

While the move to on-demand, downloadable film and television shows is great news for consumers, I’m afraid it may be the beginning of the end of the performing right for audiovisual works (that is, films and television shows) in favor of a mechanical-rights-dominated on-demand system as the world moves towards on-demand delivery of audiovisual products […]

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We Need Some New (Independent) Faces on the ASCAP Board

I’ve come to the conclusion that instrumental composers need more and better representation on the ASCAP Board of Directors. The substandard royalty rates for instrumental and CPA music, the choice to not implement effective technology for tracking instrumental music on television, and the cowardly act by the ASCAP Board in drafting language that has virtually […]

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Cinescore: The Director-Composer, Score Generating Software, and What it Means for Film & TV Composers

Is Sony’s new Cinescore software, marketed as being able to generate “fully composed music” for film and television, the beginning of the end for film and TV composers? No. But it should serve as a huge wake-up call about the importance of composers doing more than just “keeping up” with technology, and the fact that […]

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ASCAP’s “I Create Music EXPO” – Avoiding the “hard” Questions?

While I was unable to attend ASCAP’s recent “I Create Music” expo held in Los Angeles recently due to my teaching schedule in NY and Boston, the glowing press releases from ASCAP certainly told the tale of an information-filled expo experience. Kudos to ASCAP for putting some of our royalty money into what appears to […]

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