Updated: Jul 31, 2020
Music Copyrights exist in a pair and depending on what idea (original, authentic and tangible) you produce, you handle the business of that idea differently.
Business - 1
This business exists as soon as you write a unique piece of music that is original to you. Although, you are not required to register the copyright for this one, we advise you do it anyway.
This business deals with the lyrics, composition, arrangement and structure of a song. This is the basic copyright, without which there would not exist any final track.
Some individuals and organisations, known as Publishers, provide their expertise help in managing this business for writers. Hence, this business may also be known as the composition or the publishing business.
To read more about this business, check out our 'What is Music Publishing?' blog.
Business - 2
This business exists after creation of a recording of a song. The artists/ performers (singers/ musicians/ players) own the copyright of this business until they get into an agreement with a record label or a distributor, which might take a percentage of the revenues from the copyright ownership. An artist might also get into an agreement known as the 'Work-for-hire' arrangement wherein they do not own the copyright rather paid an upfront payment for the delivery of the work and relinquishment of the ownership of the copyright.
This business deals with the master recording, samples, other parts of the recorded track. As you have already guessed, this business would not exist without Business -1 (i.e. the composition and lyrics themselves). Although, the business-1 for your business-2 might belong to someone else. Example, If you are a cover artist, you are essentially using someone else's composition but recording it on own own. Hence, your recorded track's revenues from Business-1 go to the original writer and revenues from Business-2 go to you.
Some individuals and organisations, known as Record Labels, provide their expertise help in managing this business for writers. Hence, this business may also be known as the master (final recorded track) or the record business.
To read more about this business, stay tuned to Groovy's blogs.