Whether you’re producing a documentary, a short film, a TV series, replacing music on a prior project you wish to release where clearances aren’t available or creating a new version of an existing song, you need permission to do so. This involves something called the Compulsory Law and the need to provide proof that licensing has been properly organized with the appropriate clearances given by the owner(s) of the songs.
Let’s look at different types of projects where song clearances are important.
Creating a New Version of an Existing Song as a Musical Artist
When you’re overly enamored with a song that you’ve heard and as an artist, you wish to recreate it, putting your own spin on the original themes, then it’s a good idea to use song licensing services. Professional song clearance services can obtain permission to use the song within just a few days, which then opens the door to get creative using the original material.
Be honest about what your real intentions are with the song. Song owners won’t necessarily enjoy discovering later that you’ve changed half the lyrics or messed with the melody. If you have some idea of what you’re looking to do and can knock something up quickly to rough out your basic ideas, then this could prove useful in obtaining song permissions based on what you plan to do.
Arranging Replacement Music for Old TV Projects
As the interest in older TV series from the 80s and earlier continues to grow, it’s proving difficult to get the necessary song clearances for the songs that were included in the original TV series. Deals at the time did not anticipate the creation of DVDs and online distribution, with the song licensing not often including these necessary permissions. Obtaining the song licensing permissions for older songs isn’t easy as artists (and sometimes their relatives if the artist has passed on) hold unusual emotional attachments to certain songs and don’t wish to license them. This results in needing to create a new soundtrack for an old TV series that will naturally fit into the narrative and suspenseful parts of each episode.
Creating Soundtracks for Movie Projects
Creating a soundtrack from scratch for a new movie to strike the right mood is not easy. It’s often better to license lesser known songs than try to license recent songs with artists often asking astronomical amounts for the license for a movie project. Because of this, a soundtrack for a movie with a lower budget must get creative to come up with appropriate songs where the releases are priced sensibly. This makes it realistic to put together an interesting collection of tracks that enhance the enjoyment of the movie for the audience. A talented song release team can do that when they know what a project requires to be successful.
Whatever your music requirements are, the clearer you can be with a song clearance team, the better they’ll be able to assist you. When there’s a budgetary restriction per song release or per project, stating this upfront makes everyone’s job easier from the start.