Why is Music Publishing Important?

It’s where many songwriters earn the most money.

The majority of an artist’s publishing royalties comes from their mechanical and public performance rights. Mechanical rights cover the reproduction of a song on a physical record or a digital stream. Public performance rights cover every time a song is played on radio and television stations, and in restaurants, clubs, and bars.

In a standard contract between a band and a label, the label is required — by law — to pay the composer a fixed rate per song. This is for the right to use the composition on commercially sold recordings, aka the statutory mechanical royalty rate

The statutory mechanical royalty rate for the U.S. is currently 9.1 cents per song. The exact rate varies by territory, however.

Advances in digital music distribution have made independent music available to a much wider audience with many different types of payment models. This has created a significant increase in publishing revenues for many songwriters, and made publishing as important as it’s ever been.


Did you know that if a band or artist writes their own material, they are by default the 'publisher' of those songs and automatically own 100% of the copyright?



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