When you’re working on a tight budget, every cent gets scrutinized and pinched. If you’re producing media for the Internet, working on an independent film, bringing your first television pilot to life out of your own pocket, creating TV promos or radio spots, or just working in the media industry during a time when dollars have to go farther, it can be tempting to cut corners with the music you use. After all, it can be very expensive to license commercial music– not to mention the hassles involved since both the master and publishing need to be cleared from the song publisher and record label, respectively.
When you’re making budget-driven choices about music, we’d like to encourage you to work with a reputable, exclusive music library– a company that can instantly clear both the master and sync rights, offer reasonable rates, and help you avoid the legal pitfalls and hassles of using improperly cleared music. Here are five reasons to go this way:
1. Pay now, or Risk Paying Later. The main drawback to getting music for free off the Internet, potentially from an illegal or pirated site, is that there could be legal hassles up to and including a lawsuit and criminal charges if music is downloaded illegally and/or not properly cleared for use. Legal issues and conflicting licensing claims may also arise when using music from so-called “retitled” or “non-exclusive” providers. Finally, many people erroneously believe that you can download a song from iTunes and use it in a TV commercial, webcast or other production. They don’t realize that music rights need to be cleared for use in any production. Working with a reputable exclusive library makes this process quick and easy- and legal.
2. Time is Money. There are sites online that offer “free” music available for use in media projects, but often these sites are loosely structured. The artists sharing their tracks are the ones who choose the genre, categories, and keywords associated with their music. They upload their full-length, pre-mixed track to the site, and leave the rest up to you– the rest being an exhaustive search process and extended editing time. If time is money, using a professional library with a well-indexed site could be a savings in the long-run, and having access to multiple versions of every track will save you time in editing.
3. Curation is an Artform. Free music sites are usually populated with content made available by willing musicians– not with the best music, or the most appropriate music– just the music someone was willing to give away for free. When you work with a professional music library, you’re benefitting from professionals creating a curated collection of high-quality media-appropriate tracks.
4. Support your Local Artist! When you get something for free, it means that nobody has been paid for it. If you value your own time, and if you’re expecting to be paid for the work you’re producing, it’s important to imagine that the artists creating high-quality music for media feel the same way. Choosing media music from a reputable exclusive music library results in a trickle-down of income for the people working for the library and for all of the artists and technicians who collaborate on the music they represent.
5. Need Help? We’re Here For You! Navigating the outrageous volume of music on the web can be overwhelming. When you’re working with a free site, chances are there isn’t someone waiting at the end of the phone line to help you narrow your search. (See: Time is Money!) When you work with an established music library, though, there are music supervisors waiting to help you find the perfect tracks when you need them. On deadline? Multitasking? Reach out to the pros at a reputable exclusive music library, and let them help you get things done.
We hope we’ve given you some compelling reasons to use a professional exclusive music library for your next production. If you’d like to know more about how Megatrax Production Music can help you find the perfect tracks with the proper clearances on time and on budget, please visit us at Megatrax.com or call 888.MEGA.555.