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Big Droppings question

Discussion in 'Ask Michael Dimin' started by jeff schmidt, Sep 3, 2004.

  1. jeff schmidt

    jeff schmidt no longer red carded, but my butt is still sore.

    Aug 27, 2004
    Novato, CA
    Hello Michael - Big Droppings dropped in my lap today - excellent work! Very nice stuff.

    I'm curious what the rules are for recording and selling the compositions of others.

    I understand there must be some kind of renumeration - but it's obviously not prohibitive.

    Can you explain a bit about the process of getting clearence on those songs? Did you record them first and then seek rights?

    Do you pay up front and then for each copy sold - or for each copy manufactured? I'm curious because there is obviously hundreds of versions of some of these songs.

    Is that enuff questions?

    Thanks - great CD!

    BTW- I noticed BD was recorded in Albany - my hometown! Schenectady actually.
  2. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Thanks for the kind words. I live in the Capital Region. It's nice - half way to anywhere you could ever want to go (boston or nyc). If you ever get back here, give me a ring.

    For using other's work in a recording, you need a "mechanical license". There is an agency in NY - Harry Fox Agency that handles mechanical license for very many tunes. Two tunes on the disc, "Song For My Father" and "3 Views of a Secret" are not handled by them. When dealing with harry Fox, you pay upfront for the number of records produced. The standard license fee is about 7.5 cents per song (up to 5 minutes). Over 5 minutes you pay more. At least for my purposes, there is no need for specific permission to record the song. For "Song For My Father" by Horace Silver you need to deal directly with "Ecaroh Music" (Horace spelled backwards. When you call them, you actually speak to Horace Silver himself - now that was VERY cool. For this tune I pay quarterly, based on sales. The license for the Jaco piece was another story altogether. Harry Fox runs a website called songfile.com that can grant license over the internet or if not, tell you who does handle the license. At the time of the release, it stated that Jaco's brother Rory handled the license - yet the contact info was no longer valid. I had performed the piece for his son Felix and he dug it. I got hold of his wife's email, told her that I played it for Felix and asked for license. She granted me the license. I then followed up with a bunch of emails, asking where I should send the fees and never heard anything. I have this mone for them (albeit not a great deal) but I would like to pay it. It is my obligation and my honor.


    BTW, I just now taking a break from editing a new, live recording - from some gigs I did at my favorite haunt, 1 Caroline St Jazz Bistro in Saratoga, NY.
  3. jeff schmidt

    jeff schmidt no longer red carded, but my butt is still sore.

    Aug 27, 2004
    Novato, CA
    Thanks Michael.

    According to the Harry Fox website - most of the tunes I checked - under 5 mins for 2500 copies was about $212.00 each.

    Not bad.

    I havn't been to Saratoga in years! Great place! I'm in the area for a week every holiday. I'll drop you a line.