Adventures in Music Licensing July 2019

Ed Hartman's

Adventures in Music Licensing


July 2019 Vol. 7, No. 7



*  Welcome new readers!  Please feel free to email questions about music licensing (and scoring).  I will answer you by email, and add your questions (anon.) in the next newsletter. (see below)

* Happy July! We're having a bit slow start to summer this year, in the great Pacific NW.  One more rain system coming in, then hopefully high pressure takes over for the summer!  Now back to the news...

* The next licensing class is Sat, Oct 26, 2019. (
Please share this with any musicians, bands, songwriters or composers you know in the Pacific Northwest. If you live outside of the Pacific NW, I will be taking my class on the road. Please email me, if you have any connections with music schools in your area. I can offer a combination morning Licensing Workshop, and afternoon Percussion Clinic!
Can't make the class?   I have been doing a lot of "one-on-one" sessions with folks.  It's a great way to answer nagging questions about licensing, and help organize your process for pitching, etc. We can take a listen and analyze at your music for licensing potential.  I generally do sessions in my studio in Edmonds, WA.  A band can come together to share the cost.  Otherwise, I can skype, phone, or FB Video with you. Email for info.

* I would very much appreciate any testimonials you have about the class or individual sessions. This feedback helps with promoting future classes. Please email me (see below).

* UPDATE “As the Earth Turns”:  I mentioned finding a new version of "As the Earth Turns" (from the family of an actor in the film).  We did digitize it, and there was an intriguing new scene.  I'm still not sure what to think about it.  It's a bit out of place (less sharp, footage-wise).  We may put it in, or at least, put in in "extras".  What was learned, was that the copy we just got, is nearly the same length, with very few changes.  That means: 1) My edits were correct! (Yeah!) 2) The version we have is probably the original (it has the color ending.  The copy does not).   This is a huge deal.  The film was originally longer (based on the directors information), so any cuts that were done, were on purpose, by the director.  
Also, I have scored a short scene from another lost film of Lyford.  It's a MUMMY film!  There's one more to do, too, that's on the Jeckl-Hyde side!  Those will probably be released with Earth in a future distribution deal.

Upcoming confirmed screenings: 

Film Festival @ Browns Point, Tacoma, WA. Friday, Aug 2, 2019, 5pm. Sorry, I will not be able to attend this screening, but I will be in VEGAS for...
Las Vegas International Film & Screenwriting Competition (part of the Action on Film Megafest/Hollywood Dreams 3rd Annual International Film Festival and Writers' Competition, Friday, August 2, 2019, 2pm, Palms Resort and Casino, Las Vegas.  The film is up for at least TWO awards (Best Sci-FI and Best Score!)
Gen Con Indianapolis, IN Saturday, Aug 3, 2019 10:30am.   
West European International Film Festival Thursday, Aug 22, 2019, 7:45pm. - Brussells, Belgium
The film is now in 88 film festivals (and counting), won 101 awards/nominations including 27 for best score! There will likely be a few more NW screenings.
List of festivals and awards: 

Recent adventures in licensing: 

The pitching game:  Songtradr forwards ("Final" - to music sups!) for Harp.  
Dreaming of an Angel (solo harp, originally created for another harp pitch)
Native Sun - (Native American, New Age.  Originally created for a TAXI pitch years ago.)
Two-Part Invention (a la Bach) written in 1980!)
The Storm Approaches (Trailer.  Written a year or two ago.  This made a playlist!) 
Fingers crossed on the fowards!

* Recent TAXI forwards: (Hoping the “crickets” will quiet down!)
Carnival Dance - to a Music Library
Review from TAXI: Great rag time solo piano Ed!  Note:  I did use direct -license piece recently in a online series (I was paid to score).  This piece worked well (I have several versions).   It was a bit slow, so I did speed it up for the usage. (Amazing Slower-Downer!)

BMI Day!  I am happy to report another strong quarter!   Keep em coming.  
Happy BMI Day! I got a very nice solstice surprise - 6:24 Prime-time Network usage - that's MASSIVE!  A track of mine, "In Love with You" was recently placed on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (CW)! Extreme background (I had to put on headphones to hear it in the distance!), but helps pays the mortgage! There will be a year after the show, "up-front" sync fee in my future, thanks to Crucial Music (originally via TAXI).  I hadn't heard about the placement until I saw it on my BMI statement.  Always, I repeat, always check on placements with a library! 
Here's the track:
The track was also used in "PIRATES OF SOMALIA" and is making good money, too!
"Surviving Christmas" (2004 movie with Ben Affleck and James Ganolfini) continues to KICK-BUTT!  The trailer also has my track (listen for Sugar Plums at :47)

On the Youtube front:
A few months ago, I reported a large payment for a track that was placed a few years ago for a film (via a library).  Since then it's gotten nearly a million views on a few channels.  I left that library, ironically because they wanted to collect my YT royaties.  (Great library, otherwise!)  I didn't start getting payments for it, until recently.  All of a sudden the $ were VERY GOOD.  It did go down, dramatically, and I checked with Adrev(They collect my YT royalties).  There was another claim on the video.  I was able to get my part back.  I had been monitoring the main channel, and the views have been steadily climbing 1K per day, or so.  That's about $1 a day.  Not big money, but it can add up to hundreds over a year.  It's at about 914K at the moment!
My track, "Rivertrance" is at the beginning and end:


Tales from the Tech-Side:

* East-West Orchesta and Pianos:
I've been using EW samples for orchestral instruments and piano.  I really like them.  They are pretty easy to use, and the "PLAY" player is a lot better and more stable now.  Besides the deep samples (they come on 1T drives!) the three mic positions are the real attraction, especially for piano.  My keys game has gone up a LOT!  One trick I use for soloing is slowing down the track.  I can sound pretty good (I've never had a great right hand!).  Here's a sample:  The vibes, and everything else are real, in real-time!


Questions from the Audience...

I am a music producer and I would love to find a better approach to reach out to music library and secure a license deal. I have been curious about it for song long, read books about it. However, applying the knowledge seems to have me insecure. Can you help me? I have gone through your website material and submitted to the maybe the first 5 links.

I can tell you this can take a long time.  Submitting to libraries can take weeks or months, and getting licenses can take a lot longer.  If you keep doing this for years, it will pay off.  You do need to register with a PRO (Performing Rights Organization (ASCAP, BMI in the US) so that you can collect royalties.  Some libraries may sell their entire catalogue to a TV network, and royalties may be the only money you will make.  Everyone you deal with will want your registration information.  
Songtradr (Free or an inexpensive membership) may be a good way to start.   You can upload your own tracks (they need to be high res WAV 24-48 files). You will fill out information on the site (metadata).  It is a library, and also has opportunities you can pitch your music too.  
This is a game of numbers.  The more tracks you create, the better.  Your goal is hundreds of tracks. Quality is important, but a good variety of music, and a lot of tracks will get your odds up of getting licenses.  Keep reading, keep submitting.  If you target non-exclusive libraries, you can submit to as many as you want.

You mentioned a "pitching agent" being the facilitator of this...would appreciate more info about this-would it be another way of saying "publisher" or do you have a specific industry  function in mind that people I should try to get my material to provide?

I don’t do that myself.  I pretty much create finished tracks, whether they go to music libraries, music sups, etc. There are folks that shop to majors to develop talent, whether that means performers or writers.  If you go to Linkedin, you might get more leads.  Musicxray, Musicgateway and occasionally TAXI have opportunities like this as well.
What is the difference between a demo and a finished track?

A demo or finished track are now the same.  Because everyone has recording equipment the level of quality should be pro.  What the arrangement is, may change.  In other words, if you are shopping to a vocals, etc., I wouldn’t spend a lot of time with arrangement.  I would keep the song simple.  Guitar, keyboards, vocals.  On the other hand, because music is so produced now, arrangement can be more involved.  Whatever you do, I would say the song has to be better than the arrangement.  Think Lennon/McCartney.  

Are there places that I can create my own "online library"?
I use Hostbaby and that allows unlimited track uploads, my domain, etc.  ($20/month with specials, and free distribution on CdBaby) It is not great for cross-referencing, although you can create many folders with the same tracks, but you have to upload them again. Unless you are selling your music, or want to instantly licensing, a personal website may be best. Songtradr can do the licensing as a library now.  Otherwise, I have a  site, where I can create many folders of tracks (you can copy and move tracks).  No cross-referencing, but I can send a link (read only, download, etc.).  It’s free with limited space (I put mp3s on there. I’m send full res, if someone is interested).  It works well when I pitch to music supervisors, etc.  Dropbox and others do this.

For scoring folks:
Here is a REAL noobie-movie-question….with multiple choice answers!!!  I’ve written/recorded a 3 min score to a movie promo for a friend of mine.  (I loaded the video into Logic and scored to picture).  Which of the following is the more correct way to get the audio back to him after I have mixed and mastered the audio?
1.  Bounce the audio tracks out as a WAVE file and send it to him.  Then he lays it in to his video on his equipment.
2.  Bounce out the audio AND video together and send it to him.  

I bounce the video as a reference, to see the sync.  Bounce a 24-48 wave or air file for actual sound.  Usually, I have the filmmaker add a 10 count 2 pop, inf there is other sound (dialogue) on the dialogue track, to sync the wav file with later.  When you bounce the audio, leave the pop in the beginning on the dialogue track, and then mute after.  Bounce all tracks, including the dialogue track.  The pop will be in the final mix.  It can be synced.  If it’s just music, it’s less an issue, although, be aware that filmmakers may place your music anywhere.  In the end, it’s their film!






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Ed Hartman Consultation

I am always available for one-on-one consultation, in person or via phone or Skype (call or email to set up)

One hour: $70.00

Two hours: $120.00

Groups: contact for price

I will be happy to critique your music, make recommendations for marketing, suggest libraries to put you music in, help figure out studio configurations (although I am not a heavy tech person. I can recommend people, though), and give you general career advice. If you are interested, please call or email. 


Joke/Quote of the week:

"WIt's like a whole orchestra, the piano for me."
Dave Brubeck