Music lawyer Tamera Bennett co-presented with music attorney Joe Stallone at the Dallas edition of Grammy GPS on the topic “Legal Considerations for Every Aspiring Artist.” The 75 minute presentation was fast paced and hit the high points on items new recording artists and folks breaking into the music business should consider. Below are the four broad areas discussed as well as links for additional information on each topic.
Assembling Your Team
When do you need a manager, an entertainment attorney, a financial manager, publicist?
- Interview with entertainment attorney Dina Lapolt on hiring a manager, attorney, etc.
- Entertainment Attorney Kendal Minter chats about when to hire an entertainment lawyer.
- What You Really Need To Know About Managers And Talent Agents.
- Management Deals, The Basic Points.
- When Does a Band Need a Publicist, and How Do They Know Who To Choose?
Get it in writing — Now
- Organizing Your Band as a Company: A Way to Protect Yourself and Keep Your Friends.
- What Happens When It Falls Apart? The “Sugarland” Partnership dispute.
- Internal Band Agreement 101
Protecting Your Most Valuable Assets: Trademark, Copyright, Right of Publicity
- US Patent and Trademark Office
- Most bands should consider filing trademark applications in Class 009 for recording product and digital downloads; Class 041 for live performances; and Class 025 for clothing items.
- Trademark Basics Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.
- Sly and the Family Stone Trademark Dispute
- From ABBA to ZZ Top All The Good Band Names Are Taken
- US Copyright Office
- There is a copyright in a musical composition; and
- A copyright in the sound recording of a musical composition.
- Copyright arises the moment an original works is fixed into a tangible medium of expression.
- Who will own the songs? All the members of the band? Just the members that wrote the songs?
- Who will own the sound recordings? The band? The business entity formed by the band?
- Will you form a music publishing company?
- What performance rights organization will the songwriter’s join ( BMI, ASCAP or SESAC ) for collection of public performance royalties of the songs?
- Has the artist, band, producer, label joined Sound Exchange for collection of digital performance royalties?
Right of Publicity
Separate and apart from the band name and the songs/hits of the band, the band members each have an individual “right of publicity” in their persona. Who controls that right? The band? The manager? This is a state law right. In Texas the right arises under common law, but is descendable by statute.
Paying For Stardom – Financing Your Career
- Calling All Angels: How Investment Backers Can Finance A Demo Album
- Who’s calling the shots?
- Is it investment in one project or the whole career?
- Do you need to consider “securities law ” issues?
Texas Music Office