if you release music do you have to use your real name?
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Old 26-02-2012, 08:30 PM   #1
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if you release music do you have to use your real name?

When an artist releases music through a label to be sold as physical and digital formats do they have to use their real name on the packaging as in "songs written by ____" or can they use a fake name the way that some writers use a pen name?

I ask this because I know there was that thing about the tuss being Richard D James (aphex twin) but the labe was saying it was these other names but when the cd was released people were saying it says produced by Richard D james inside.... Like, is there some sort of legal requirement that in order to get paid the artists real name must be shown?

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Old 26-02-2012, 09:11 PM   #2
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Re: if you release music do you have to use your real name?

Not neccessarily, I remember seeing Mr. Bungle's liner notes for Disco Volante, great band by the way...having some fake goofy names in their cd liner notes.

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Old 28-02-2012, 04:05 PM   #3
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Re: if you release music do you have to use your real name?

Nope, liner notes is just liner notes. They don't mean anything legally.

Very likely if the label is paying someone who is using an assumed name they've registered that name with the government as a DBA - Doing Business As. Costs about a hundred bucks at the courthouse and gives you a document that states that checks to Aphex Twin can be cashed by Richard D James.

In fact, I've been told it's good practice for producers to sign contracts as their pseudonym and not their legal name - that way if they want to produce under a different name for a different label, they aren't bound by exclusivity clauses.

EDIT: note that I Am Not A Lawyer.
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Old 28-02-2012, 04:55 PM   #4
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Re: if you release music do you have to use your real name?

wow thanks allot to both of you! If anyone else has info on this I am very curious. I feel that in a way this is a new era where there is less of a focus on the personality and image and more on the music (at least in the world f the experimental stuff), so I really see no reason why more artists should not be as anonymous as they choose. Im thinking about burial and boards of canada here where they make some of the best music ever and yet they can probably live lives and walk around their local area and be just random dudes.

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