Signing a contract to release an EP [question]
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Old 26-09-2011, 05:13 AM   #1
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Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

I was contacted via soundcloud from a small label that wants to pick up some of my songs for and EP, they seem pretty legit but I don't know how paranoid one should be about these things. they are asking for a 10 for each track on a 4 song EP:"This covers distribution costs, and you get professional studio mastering, distribution, and 100% of the profit from the sale of your music. Please do not make payment until you have your contract and are happy with the terms set out."

anyone have some experience with this?

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Old 26-09-2011, 07:28 AM   #2
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

I used to have stuff like that on Myspace that were definitely spam attempts

That doesn't sound too bad, I'd ask for contact info to discuss it with them

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Old 26-09-2011, 07:40 AM   #3
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

You have to pay them? I wouldn't do that. You're better off just submitting demos to established, reputable labels. This just screams scam to me, I dunno. I'm not too experienced in this stuff either but paying to get my stuff out sounds terribly shady.
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Old 26-09-2011, 10:13 PM   #4
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

You shouldnt have to pay, it sounds suspicious.
Tell them to take it out of whatever you make on them, if they're serious.
If they are a legit label and see the product being sold, this shouldn't be a problem.
Get your own mastering anyway, you dont know what they'll do to it.

My last release got slammed with a limiter and pretty much screwed the quality,
I don't think they 'mastered' it all.

Overall, I'd say to have some patience, make your product better, do everything yourself, then shop to labels you WANT to be on. I've had so many problems with said release, I wouldnt wish anyone else to go through, it's not worth it.
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Old 26-09-2011, 10:56 PM   #5
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

Sorry, anyone who wants you to pay to get your song on a release shouldn't be bothered with. They should have enough confidence in your music to know they will recoup the money they front for mastering, promo, etc.

If they're saying you're going to keep 100% of the profits I would still look at this with a squinty eye. Are they a legit label? Have you heard of them? Do they have an actual website? Have you heard their previous releases? Try asking some of their previous artists how they like the label. Take a DAMN good look at any contract they send you.

In the end... is it what you want or are you just itching to be on a label no matter what the cost?
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Old 26-09-2011, 11:07 PM   #6
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

With the red flags involved here, I think it's best to forget the whole thing and not waste any extra time on it.
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Old 27-09-2011, 01:24 AM   #7
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

Never EVER pay a label to release your stuff.

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Old 27-09-2011, 01:33 AM   #8
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

Read all clauses in a contract before signing and don't ever pay a label to release your work. It sounds very suspicious, what are they planning to do with ur work anyways?
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Old 27-09-2011, 05:56 AM   #9
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

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Read all clauses in a contract before signing and don't ever pay a label to release your work. It sounds very suspicious, what are they planning to do with ur work anyways?

Uhhhh - release it on an EP???

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Old 27-09-2011, 05:08 PM   #10
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

Sorry dude I would def get a lawyer to look into it for you!! Sounds a little fishy that you would have to pay and not the other way around!!

labels always pay YOU a licencing fee if they want your music! Usually around 700-1500. Also check to see if they have a distribution with a big label like sony, universal. If not I would run the other way. Alot of people on soundcloud are bs.

PLEASE be careful!!!
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Old 27-09-2011, 06:29 PM   #11
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Re: signing a contract to release an ep question

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Originally Posted by DJ Ike View Post
Sorry dude I would def get a lawyer to look into it for you!! Sounds a little fishy that you would have to pay and not the other way around!!

labels always pay YOU a licencing fee if they want your music! Usually around 700-1500. Also check to see if they have a distribution with a big label like sony, universal. If not I would run the other way. Alot of people on soundcloud are bs.

PLEASE be careful!!!
To provide some perspective on this comment...

Retaining a lawyer can be expensive. You should at least educate yourself enough on basic contract law to differentiate between a solid deal and a bogus offer.

Labels don't always pay you a licensing fee. There are many deal structures that can be worked out.

Just because a label isn't distributed by a major label distribution arm doesn't mean they're not legit. There are LOADS of successful labels that aren't partnered with the majors.

The best advice anyone could ever give you is to do your research. If you have to ask questions like this in a forum you're taking the first step. The next is to crack open a book and start learning
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Old 27-09-2011, 06:53 PM   #12
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

I see where your coming from, but does this label release on itunes beatport etc through either a major or aggregate? and wouldnt you agree that a legit label would NEVER EVER ask you to pay them? sorry i do not agree with him paying the label ever. Sounds like a scam to me.

But thats just my opinion!
Try sending it out to legit labels you have nothing to lose!
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Old 28-09-2011, 01:57 AM   #13
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

its an A&R contract, they're apparently backed by a major label but they offer non-exclusive contracts, release the artists music and keep tabs on their sales, this way the parent label doesnt have to invest a bunch of money on a failed launch. I'll post some info I have.

We provide a contract that gives you 100% of the profit from the sale of your music. You keep the
rights to your music. You are free to work with other artists, producers and labels with no financial
penalty from 10 Dollar Records. We provide Professional mastering on your first release for free.
We distribute your music to a big network of retailers, including iTunes, Amazon, Juno, HMV,
Jamster (ringtones) Nokia Ovi (mobile store) eMusic, TuneTribe, Spotify, Napster and a very large
list of niche retailers from around the world.

There is a one off fee of 10 per track to cover distribution costs. In return you get professional
studio mastering, distribution, free artwork and 100% of the profit from the sale of your music is
paid to you directly. We send you a sample copy of the mastered track for your executive approval
and the tracks are only sent to the distributors when you are happy with the release.

separate email-

When the contract is returned and the payment is processed we will require the WAV files for mastering, which I will send to the studio for you and when they come back (usually within 5 days) I will send a copy to you for your approval. If you are happy with the release I will set up your account with the distributors as you are paid directly by them in to your PayPal account and I will prepare your release for distribution, including applying a unique barcode, cat number and meta release data. The release is then sent to the distributors, an official release date is set and in stores in six weeks, this gives the distributors a universal release date to create a sales page and list your release for sale.


these are only chunks from a few emails between them and I.

website-

http://ireland-advertising.com/#/10-...rds/4551921693


a few releases I found-

http://www.junodownload.com/products...ah/1783916-02/

http://www.discogs.com/mp3/Suoy-Oh-Y...16?ev=dg-brtit

http://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/pri...ep/id450730194

so they actually put their artists stuff online.

thoughts?

I'm not really itching for a label, or cash at this point. I pretty much always had in mind to release my own work.

check this though,

18. All Masters produced hereunder, from the inception of the recording thereof,
and all phono-records & all other reproductions made there from, together
with the performances embodied therein, and all copyrights thereto, along
with all applicable renewals and extensions shall entirely remain the property
of the Artist(s), free of any claims whatsoever by Producer(s) or any other
Person(s) engaged in the production of the Masters (this being understood
that for copyright purposes, the Producer and any other Person rendering
services in connection with such Masters shall be contractors for hire).

meaning if I decide to cancel the contract (its for 5 years, with option to cancel with a 240 day notice) they won't keep the rights to any of my stuff?

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Old 28-09-2011, 02:57 AM   #14
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

my only concern at this point would be... How does $10 pay for professional mastering, distribution and promotion?

It doesn't. Professional mastering costs around $50 per track (could be less in bulk). Promotions costs MUCH more money in the amount of man hours and resources that have to be put together for a successful campaign. Distribution... well, that's not cheap either.

I guess I'm still skeptical because it sounds like this label isn't getting anything out of the deal. Which makes no sense because they're obviously in the money making business.

If you're in no rush to sign anything to a label... don't do it.

If you've got tunes to spare, read the contract carefully, understand it, and sign away.
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Old 29-09-2011, 05:06 PM   #15
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

Professionl mastering is anywhere from 50 to 250. I dont get how they put it up on itunes etc and dont take a cut!!

im thinking the best thing for you to do is contact itunes or beatport and ask who there approved aggregate's are and you can def get your release's on and you also have the piece of mind that its legit!!

They will take a little piece of the profit but its not much!! they will also walk you through it!!
Good luck mate and be careful!!!!
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Old 29-09-2011, 05:13 PM   #16
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

Take it from someone in the business. iTunes/Amazon/Beatport/etc. hate it when artists hound them about how to get their music on the storefront.

In the case of iTunes, they won't do a direct deal. You have to be signed to a label and that label most likely has to go through a distributor that has a direct deal. That's the only way.

Similarly, Beatport rarely (probably not anymore) does direct deals with artists. They also have stringent criteria for accepting new labels.

Your best bet is to get signed by a label that already has a distribution deal with the storefronts. Don't go around bothering the storefronts about how to get your music to them. Do your homework.
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Old 29-09-2011, 07:26 PM   #17
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

I've seen offers like this for rap (what I mainly do) and the thing is, theres no need to do this. If you are at the point where your work is good enough to be signed to a label then you won't have to pay.

The bottom line is,

If a record label isn't taking a % from your sales, but is asking for a flat fee - they don't expect it to sell, which means they won't put much effort into it.
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Old 29-09-2011, 09:10 PM   #18
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

awesome, i really appreciate all the advice. I think i'm going to hold out. I always had planned to release my own stuff anyway. This is just something that came up. you guys rule.

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Old 13-10-2011, 02:07 PM   #19
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

You should not be asked for any money from any type of record label ever. Stay well clear!!!
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Old 15-10-2011, 05:39 AM   #20
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Re: Signing a contract to release an EP [question]

Agree with the other comments, you should never have to pay. Sounds like you have made the right decision to steer clear of them.

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