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Steve Moore, B.A., J.D. Author Steve has been in the music business for over 30 years! He's worked as a professional musician, producer, and has been involved in almost every aspect of the music business. He's also the author of "The Truth about the Music Business"

Foreign Royalties – Do you really know what’s up?

Ever wonder if you’re getting paid for your FOREIGN ROYALTIES? 

Are you sure that your FOREIGN SUB-PUBLISHING RIGHTS are not being passed from one sub-publisher in one country to another subdivision in another country and each taking their 25% share…

Many songrwiters or copyright owners will look at their Foreign Royalties as just a bonus – but sometimes those royalties can add to way more than one may think!

Especially southern roots, blues, and similar music are very popular overseas and in some cases are used in Films – where a writer gets a piece of the ticket price from the theater’s where the song has been played. 

Next time you get your Foreign Royalty check make sure to follow the money – find out if your foreign sub-publisher has or is using any subsidiaries – and then make double sure that they are not passing your song along from one place to another where each can take their 25% Cut!  If you think about 25% x 25% x 25% and so on can add up a one big amount – so make sure that you work closely with your licensing company (ASCAP, BMI, SESAC)  as well as Sound Exchange, and Harry Fox to make sure you’re getting paid – also make sure that your music is NOT being used on YouTube or in other places where you are not getting paid – if you find a use that’s not been licensed (either by Sync Rights, Mechanicals, Performance or otherwise) then make sure to let the Social Media Channel or wherever the infringement is being hosted to know immediately. 

Unfortunately, seeking redress is difficult as the ICJ (Int’l Court of Justice) isn’t going to help and traveling overseas to try to find out any information or even seek redress could prove to be a losing proposition – but there’s no mistake about it – if you’re not getting your music out internationally you’re missing out on a HUGE OPPORTUNITY!  One just never knows! 


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