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The Benefits of Keeping and Selling Music Rights

Any artist that has found success in the music industry at one point or another has been faced with a simple dilemma. Giving up the rights to their music or keeping it for themselves. Since there are pros and cons to both sides let’s take a deep dive into how each can benefit you.


Selling your rights


  1. Immediate Cash On-Hand

As anyone in the music industry will tell you, it is a struggle to make money especially when you are first starting out, and many if not most musicians will give up simply because they can’t pay the bills. A quick check can allow a musician the ability to not only pay the bills but also invest that money back into their music. However, just because you need money right now be sure to consider the value of your music before pawning it off for little to nothing.


2. Possible Future Partnerships

When considering selling your rights, one thing you should always consider is how it will benefit you in the long run. Giving up some ownership can potentially give you and your music greater reach and visibility depending on the buyers that you are dealing with. Partnering with those who have experience in the music industry and a medium to get your song in front of consumers can potentially propel you further than you could ever reach on your own. After all, 100% of the revenue from a song that sells 50 times is a lot less than 50% of the revenue from a song that sells 100,000 times.


Keeping your rights


  1. Potential Long-term Revenue Stream

For those musicians who truly believe in their product and have proven quality, keeping rights can very well be the best option. Complete ownership gives the artist 100% of the revenue that is created. In the simplest terms, you don’t have to share anything with anyone. Depending on your success, the decision to own it all can lead to steady income for years to come.


2. Keeping your Options Open

Although sometimes as a musician it can be all too easy to accept the first deal that comes your way, the reality is waiting, and keeping your options open can reveal much better opportunities down the line. When a struggling musician finally “makes it” labels and distributors know one large check can captivate their attention, causing the artist not to think long term. Make sure to know the value of your own creation and wait for something that will not only benefit you in the present but will continue to produce dividends in the future.


3. Licensing

As everyone has seen in the past, licensing your own content can not only make you a lot of money but also gives you a wider audience. When owning your own music you have total control to either allow or disallow your content to be used in movies, TV shows, video games, etc. and will be the sole benefactor of the royalties produced. All too often artists who give their rights up are excluded from profits generated in licensing deals, along with being dissatisfied with the manner in which their hard work is used.


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