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  1. #16
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    11.20.19 @ 09:10 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by noise next door View Post
    Doesn't matter what you or I "think" in regards to how it "should" work... It's ALREADY clearly defined in US federal Copyright law how songwriting ownership works legally.

    If you have the talent to create these specific 3 things working together:

    1. Melody (with both pitch shape and rhythmic details)

    2. An accompanying lyric to each note.

    3. An underlying (even BASIC) counterpoint (ie chord progs) beneath those words and melody

    You 100% own the publishing and royalty rights to that song.

    It doesn't matter one bit what guitar riffs get detailed into the final recording. The bass lines don't matter. The drums don't matter. The transition sections don't matter. The arrangement doesn't matter. The guitar solos especially don't matter.

    Whoever builds this specific predefined musical foundation is legally entitled under US law to 100% ownership of the song's monetary future potential.

    Guys like Nikki Sixx and Stephen Pearcy from Ratt are dangerous in their bands because they have this specific 3-pronged skill set that make them pure songwriters and they can claim songwriting credit within their bands fully.

    You can prove ownership with a simple "lead sheet" sent over to the US copyright office in Washington that shows the melody's treble clef info, with rhythm info, with lyrics under each note, and then with a SIMPLE chord designation from bar to bar. No detailed riffs are needed at all.
    good info. Are songs written by foreigners subject to the same rules?
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  2. #17
    Baluchitherium VH122's Avatar
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    11.16.19 @ 03:19 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by ziggysmalls View Post
    I don't think one size fits all for writing. If a song comes organically from just jamming, well sure the band should get writing credit. However if a guitarist has a song demoed and approaches the band and all the drummer and bass player do is embellish, well not so sure they should get equal songwriting. I mean the guitarist simply could have hired a session bass player or drummer, paid them and put them on their way. There is not one size fits all model. If a guitarist or keyboardist has a song prepared, with chord changes and a bass player simply follows those chord changes, well its almost paint by numbers. The key, tempo, time signature, dynamics, etc already set. He just needs to pick said notes from the key and make it fit. Now obviously playing to a jazz composition will require a different amount of involvement than coming up with a bass line to an AC/DC song.

    Anyway I can see why bands split it equally but in time its a bad idea. Usually there are 1 to 2 guys doing more of the work.
    I disagree,ChickenFoot and Sting pretty much destroys your logic.
    Anyone could hear the difference in CF with a session drummer,and Sting sounds great in The Police as opposed to his generic solo band.

  3. #18
    Sinner's Swing!
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    Quote Originally Posted by billy007 View Post
    good info. Are songs written by foreigners subject to the same rules?
    That I don't know! I would think it must be similar. I would hope if I copyrighted my songs with the U.S. copyright office (as great as they are, I'm sure people are licking their chops to steal them!) that a UK office would realize if someone came in with my tune under their arm that my U.S. copyright must still hold.

    Quote Originally Posted by noise next door View Post
    Doesn't matter what you or I "think" in regards to how it "should" work... It's ALREADY clearly defined in US federal Copyright law how songwriting ownership works legally.

    If you have the talent to create these specific 3 things working together:

    1. Melody (with both pitch shape and rhythmic details)

    2. An accompanying lyric to each note.

    3. An underlying (even BASIC) counterpoint (ie chord progs) beneath those words and melody

    You 100% own the publishing and royalty rights to that song.
    Yep, you can send in the lyrics with the chords, and if you can't write out every detail of the music, a recording of you playing and singing it on acoustic works. I've got one song officially documented already, and am trying to work up a good dozen more to send in as a unit (which you can do, registering them as a single "unpublished work" for one fee). Even if no one but me ever listens to them, I like knowing I've got a little library of tunes registered with the Library of Congress! Right next to the Ark that Indiana Jones gave them.

    Quote Originally Posted by VH122 View Post
    I disagree,ChickenFoot and Sting pretty much destroys your logic.
    Anyone could hear the difference in CF with a session drummer,and Sting sounds great in The Police as opposed to his generic solo band.
    True, and Pete Townshend realized (I hope?) that people were never going to be as interested in hearing him sing "Won't Get Fooled Again" as they were in hearing Roger sing it with Keith and John on bass and drums. But hearing those Who demos explained to me why the other three seemed to have such reverence for Pete. They knew without him they'd just be good local bar musicians!

    At the same time, though, you're talking about interpretation. What Stewart Copeland did with Sting's songs was ultimately an interpretation. A bar band with a less skilled drummer could still play those songs and you would recognize them. "Roxanne" is still "Roxanne" if a guy plays it on a grand piano in an airport lounge.

    Metallica and the Red Hot Chili Peppers are great examples of what Ziggy's talking about. As long as Anthony and Flea are out there bouncing around out front, how many people are really keeping up with who's on drums and guitar with them these days? Metallica could announce they were bringing back Dave Mustaine and Jason Newsted, and there would probably be cheers! I love Kirk, but as long as you have James and Lars - especially James - you have Metallica.

  4. #19
    Atomic Punk japeape's Avatar
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    11.17.19 @ 10:43 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by ArtyBoy View Post
    This is one of the Pete Townshend demos I was talking about. It's Pete on drums, bass, keys and harmonies, and an album-quality mix, also by Pete! What could the rest of the band say? Pete had three of the greatest stylists in the history of the genre to work with, but Pete laid out the framework from start to finish!

    I've become obsessed with this song, as heard on the "Who are You?" album.

    That fucking descending riff, and the way Moon plays off of it (the fills, the killer loose feel),
    just blow my mind.

    And there's a section of Moon doing a long, high hat/percussion/Stewart Copeland before Stewart Copeland,
    jam, that he just builds & builds with intensity (purely on the high hat).

    And i love how Keith plays the first verse with the Hi-hat, then uses the ride cymbal for the second verse.

    I've always loved that guy's drumming, but he was an absolute monster with a killer style.

    But the whole band is like a Gift from God, if you are Pete.
    Pete is a fantastic writer & player, but the band that's playing his songs are like one in a billion.
    He must have thought later on, Man, i hit the lottery with these guys (and vice versa).

    There's only one Moon, Ox & Daltrey.

    There was never a weak link or regular guy.
    Graver, Walking Ed, refugee from CVH & proud tone chaser...

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  6. #20
    Atomic Punk ziggysmalls's Avatar
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    11.20.19 @ 10:14 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by VH122 View Post
    I disagree,ChickenFoot and Sting pretty much destroys your logic.
    Anyone could hear the difference in CF with a session drummer,and Sting sounds great in The Police as opposed to his generic solo band.
    And Mike has 1 writing credit with CF and a plethora in VH. So from a legal standpoint, he contributed next to nothing in the CF creation process. It was Joe and Sam for the most part, Chad coming in 3rd.

    Stewart Copeland is a drummer with a unique style. He will come through on a band recording. A guy like Tico Torres of Bon Jovi? You could have replaced him with 10 drummers throughout the Bon Jovi recording process and I don't think anybody would have noticed.

  7. #21
    Hang 'Em High noise next door's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billy007 View Post
    good info. Are songs written by foreigners subject to the same rules?
    The basic songwriting musical copyright laws are almost identical to the USA's in Canada, the UK, and Australia... they need to keep in parallel with the US music industry given that it is the 100% epicenter of the business globally... HQed in LA, NYC and Nashville (and also Toronto)

    Beyond those countries I'm not sure.

  8. #22
    Sinner's Swing!
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    Quote Originally Posted by japeape View Post
    And there's a section of Moon doing a long, high hat/percussion/Stewart Copeland before Stewart Copeland,
    jam, that he just builds & builds with intensity (purely on the high hat).
    Yeah, but Pete is doing that hi hat stuff on the demo!

    Maybe I went a bit far saying the other three would've been bar musicians, but it's not impossible. Especially in that time frame where they started, Keith and John's style probably would've been seen as way too extreme for a band that wanted to cover "Hang On Sloopy." There are guys around here who are great players, locally revered, and people pack in to hear them, but outside of this very specific area, no one's heard of them, or cares. It's entirely possible a guy as good as John Entwistle could've wound up playing crawfish broils and people would be saying, "Yeah, he's always been awesome. It's amazing he never made it further. It's all who you know, I guess."

    Zac Brown's music isn't exactly my style, but I've become intrigued with him. It seems like everyone around here knows someone who's passed through his band. There are guys with Grammy's on their bookshelves because they wrote a song with Zac Brown. But apparently he'll scoop up some local guy who plays really well, they get some time in his band, then when Zac tires of them they're returned to the world of mortals and Zac continues headlining Fenway Park and Wrigley Field. If you've got whatever knack he seems to have, you're beholden to no one.

    The Cure is another example. Every position in that band except the singer has rotated, yet every album sounds like The Cure, and every lineup has filled arenas.

    But it's like Diamond Dave said in his autobiography, there's a huge difference in doing it with hired guns vs. guys you went to high school with. With guys you meet in school, you learn what you're doing and grow your styles together. With hired guns, they're always on the phone in the next room lining up their next gig and aren't interested in creating something long-term. You could hear that in Dave's later solo albums, I think.

 

 

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