Music Publishing

Music Publishing FAQ

What Is The Difference Between A Record Label And A Publisher?

Record labels and music publishers have distinctly different roles. A record label’s role is to record, produce, market and distribute recordings of a songwriter’s work. A music publisher is responsible for the rights associated with the underlying musical composition. The publisher licenses the musical recording rights to the record label on behalf of the songwriter.


How Do I Make Money From Publishing?

A song generates money for the writer(s) when it appears on an album, gets played on the radio, used in a TV show or movie, gets sold as sheet music, and even when it is used as a ring tone on a cell phone. When the song is part of an album or is sold as sheet music, the writer gets a mechanical royalty. When a song is used in a movie or TV show, a performance royalty is paid to the writer(s).  Cash Play writers with works published receive royalty checks on a quarterly basis based on the use of the composition during the period.


Can I Send My Music In To Be Published?

Cash Play Publishing does not except unsolicited materials.  This term refers to material that is sent by someone who has no relationship with anyone at our company. The problem is unknown writers claiming that they have submitted songs  have sued publishers by  claiming that those songs were "stolen" and given to other writers to work on. Cash Play is constantly searching for talent so if you are out there making moves we will find you.  

What Is A Copyright?

Copyright protects creative works and enables composers, literary authors and other creators to be paid for their work. Copyright is the means by which those who create and own works (e.g. music and lyrics) can control who makes use of each work and the circumstances in which it is used, to ensure that the integrity and value of the work is respected.


What Does It Mean To Register A Song?

Cash Play Publishing registers the song for copyright protection through the Library of Congress U.S. Copyright office.  This action establishes you as the owner of the work and protects you in case of future dispute.  The song is then registered with various tracking agencies such as Nielson and encoded to ensure artists receive proper compensation for the use of the song. The work is also registered with the appropriate performing rights societies such as American performing rights societies, ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers), BMI (Broadcast Music, Incorporated) or SESAC.   These entities monitor, collect and pay out ‘performance royalties’ to publishers and songwriters.

For example, your song is played on the radio. Most radio stations and TV networks pay millions of dollars in “blanket license” fees each year to ASCAP, BMI and PRS, which gives them permission to play any song they want, whenever they choose. It is the role of the performing rights societies to monitor each song played and, in turn, give each respective songwriter and publisher their share (“royalties”) of that collective “blanket license” pot.

What Are Royalties?

Royalties are commissions paid to you (and to the publisher) for any third-party usage of your music. This could include a radio station or TV network playing your song, which is called “performance royalties. “Another form of royalties is “mechanical royalties.” If your song has been selected for a commercially released album that is available for sale in retail stores or for legal on-line downloading, this is covered by mechanical royalties. While performance royalties are dependent upon a song being registered with a performing rights society, mechanical royalties are dependent upon a song being licensed to a record label. The amount of mechanical royalties is determined by how many copies of the album (or the number of downloads of the song) are sold. In the case of both types of royalties, Cash Play Publishing serves as the chief advocate for our songwriters.

What Does It Mean To License A Song?

As stated above in the explanation of royalties, performance royalties are dependent upon a song being registered with a performing rights society, while mechanical royalties are dependent upon a song being licensed to a record label. Cash Play’s role of protecting a songwriter’s rights includes licensing songs with record labels and other potential users of the song. This can even include mobile phone carriers and ringtone sites, to ensure that when your song is used (even for a ringtone), it is used with your permission and with the appropriate royalties distributed to you.