Written by Omari MC
One important aspect of making a living with your music is to have multiple streams of income. Talk to any entrepreneur and this will be a key concept in making a living.
I'm not a fan of putting all my eggs in one basket, but using music publishing to make a supplemental income is very important for the DIY musician. Some artists even use it to make their entire living!
What is music publishing you may ask? Music publishing deals with the rights of songwriters and song owners. In essence, you can sell a portion of your rights to songs you make and a publishing company will license the song to TV, film, video games, and more!
You are then paid a licensing fee and a percentage royalty through your PRO (Performing Rights Organization). The most popular PRO's are BMI, ASCAP, and SESAC. These organizations collect royalties for artists and have a pay schedule whenever your song is used.
The good news? You can make thousands of dollars when your song gets licensed, and the royalties keep coming in as long as the show or film using your song is still running.
The bad news? It does take some time to get the song licensed. Often times you have to split royalties with a publishing company, and placements don't happen overnight.
It takes time, but if you build up a reputable catalog with a few publishing companies, you can have a nice supplemental income for your music.
So, how should you go about getting your songs into publishers hands for TV and film opportunities?
First of all, you NEED to make sure your music is on point. No way around this. Professional mixes, masters, instrumentals (no tags), and songwriting. If someone if going to pay you thousands of dollars for your work, they expect nothing less than the best.
Spend time on getting your craft up to par before submitting to publishing. There are free services out there. Do any of them work? I wouldn't waste my time on it. If you're serious about your music go with the paid services. They actually get results as long as you make professional music.
Personally, I've gotten a few deals from www.modernbeats.com/song-submit/ as well as other places. This is a paid service because they weed out all those not serious about their music.
You submit your music to the publishers and if your song is selected they will contact you with more information. Then you can work out a deal, sign your contracts, and get busy placing more songs!
Like I said, I do have a few deals in place, so I have a good grasp on what sound the publishers like.
You can use some of mine at www.omarimc.com if you want to be sure you're using proven instrumentals for publishing.
Don't be shy. Leave a comment below as well so we can connect!