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David Young : chambermusic
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   Posted 1/31/2008 2:31 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Last April I mentioned looking for a publisher for my piano rags.  Tried Alfred Music Publishing for several reasons.... close to home, one of their staff is a regular on this forum, and they are a large, recognized company.  But no go, they respectfully informed me that they had sufficient numbers of composers as it is, and basically have no interest in another composer no matter how appealing the music.
 
So now I have sent off letters to a dozen companies, many of those that you fine friends have suggested.  I've heard back from a few.
 
So..... one of these companies gave me permission to send them a copy of my music, which I have gladly done.  Now I get a letter back acknowledging the receipt of the scores.  So far, so good.
 
But what bugs me is the accompanying policy statement (which was the same as Alfred music), basically saying....
 
'It might take us up to 6 months to decide if we will publish your music.  In the meantime, it is our policy that you do not approach any other company for publishing.  Therefore, if you are sending your music to any other publisher for consideration, let us know, and we will send you back your music.'
 
Am I to assume, therefore, that this company be equally fair to me and not look at any other composers music until they have decided on my scores?   (Ha! Ha! Ha!).   No, I don't think so.
 
It doesn't seem fair.   How can they expect me to tie up my music in their company for 6 months without any assurance that they will publish my music?  And what is it to them if I am sending my music to 3 or 4 other publishers for review.  Does anyone, in applying for a job, just apply to one position at a time?  Never heard of it.
 
But I guess what really irks me, is.....   Do these publishers really think that the composers that they already have contracts with... do they really think that they didn't send their music to more than one publishers?  I mean,... how would they ever know?  Probably all of their composers had approached other publishers.  Why wouldn't they have?
 
It seems to me that they are taking advantage of the honest person and rewarding those who are dis-honest.
 
I tend to be a very honest guy and this policy business irks me.
 
Should I write back and say.....   "Okay, I will withdraw any intention of submitting my music to any other publishing company while you are considering my music for publication.  It is my policy that you do not consider any other new composers until you have made a consideration on my music.  I assume that you will honor this policy"....?
 
No... I don't think so.
 
 
David Young
 
 
 
 


David Young
 
Composer of classical-romantic style chamber and orchestral music.
 
Finale 2.4 through 2008
Laptop PC, windows XP home, 2.4 ghz, 516 Megs RAM
Desktop PC, windows XP home, Gigastudio 3.03, 2 Gigs RAM, 3 hard drives
 
Also... GPO, Gigastudio 3.0, Kontakt 2.2, KH solo strings, VSL horizon solo strings, JABB, PMI pianos, Sampletekk renaissance flutes, Marimba, percussion, Giovani, Anthrology Celtic Winds and Spiritual Winds, complete Kirk Hunter orchestral library, Kirk Hunter Diamond Library, Garritan Concert and Marching band, Garritan Stradiveri violin and Gofriller cello with very limited knowledge of how to use them but waiting to learn on a new power mac computer.
 
Join us at www.composeforums.com for discussion of music composition,
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Craig Keyes
Charts-R-Us



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   Posted 1/31/2008 3:10 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Law of Supply vs. Demand

There are 1000's of eager, hopeful composers all vying for an increasingly smaller marketplace. A hundred years ago, sheet music publishers were selling lots of rags and popular songs to the public.
As long as supply outstrips demand, publishers get to call the shots as far as you're concerned. Fair or not, that's the way it is.

Because Alfred is the larger of the companies you have submitted to, they have the most (potentially) to offer you, but that brings with it their conditions...
I would have started first with the smaller companies to gauge their reaction and if encouraged, move up to the big boys like Alfred & Warner, etc.

Good Luck.


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kylemac
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   Posted 1/31/2008 4:38 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
I do wind band music and it's basically the same thing.  Once you get a rep with a publisher it's a little better, but they still hold most of the cards.  I play by their rules.


kylemac
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lmscott
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   Posted 1/31/2008 7:44 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
what about self-publishing, and showing your files on the internet? If your goal is to let the masses see/hear/play/buy your music, it seems like it can be done. I am selling (admittedly) small pieces/files on the internet sans outside publisher.
Here is how I am doing it: www.sheetmusic4strings.com


Windows Vista, Finale 2007c

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kylemac
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   Posted 1/31/2008 7:56 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
lmscott said...
what about self-publishing, and showing your files on the internet?
I am looking into that, but there's some fallback from what I hear so far;
 
1st - If you want to sell in the retail areas, they normally won't deal with you if A-it's not published; B-if you're selling it on your own.
 
2nd - In my world of band music, it's almost impossible to get on state music lists if it's not published.
 
I think once you get established in a genre and have a name, then you can get your music out independently but marketing is a tough game.


kylemac
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Peter West
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   Posted 2/1/2008 6:25 AM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
David,
I think you may be being a little naive about publishers generally. They are not there to offer you a service they are there to make a profit, that means selling your music. To do that they have 2 approaches:

1. Follow the work of an unpublished composer, see how many performances he's getting, how popular he (or she of course) is becoming, then at some stage determine if their promotional department can sufficiently increase that to make taking them on worthwhile.

2. Look at unsolicited scores (99% will be rejected as the composer is obviously not getting enough performances that produce revenue or he wouldn't be taking this course of action) and see if they might fit into a future publication. Eg if you have produced a collection of rag-time piano pieces, they will consider options at a future publishing meeting and if the consensus is that a book of rag time piano pieces is is worth producing, one or two of the pieces you submitted might get included. In this case they don't want you selling in the meantime to a competitor.

What will almost never happen is a serious composer producing full scale serious composition work and not getting commercial performances and not in the public eye receiving royalties, such a composer will almost never be considered. You have to do the leg work to prove that you are viable.


Peter
Music Publishing Services

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Dr. Wiggy
Early music: modern methods



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   Posted 2/1/2008 6:55 AM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
My advice is to submit to other publishers. If another one takes you on, withdraw from the first one.
The chances of their saying "We were going to take you on, but we've found out you submitted to X as well, so we're not going to now" is almost nil, for lots of reasons.

I also agree with Peter's comments.

I suspect that the target for your work is likely to be the educational market, depending on the technical level required to perform them. If there's a way that you can think of to promote your work through educational channels and publish it yourself, then that's probably the best way to go.

Kylemac may be in a vicious circle: you can't get published without a reputation; and you can't get a reputation without being published.
But perhaps set yourself up a publisher, and then say "Yes, it's published by Kylemac Publishing Inc."


Finale 2008a, 2Ghz iMac, OS X 10.5.1, M-Audio Audiophile USB
Ancient Groove Music
www.ancientgroove.co.uk

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David Young : chambermusic
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   Posted 2/1/2008 1:14 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.

Peter and Ben, your advice is very helpful.  Makes a lot of sense.

I have certainly given a lot of consideration to the other aspects of music... performance being a very important one, and have written to a few performers.... but not nearly as many that I need to approach.  But I am working on it.

And the other issues,... is deciding if I should try to self-publish and have my own website, etc, etc.    This is something that I am currently quite a novice at, and it will take some self-encouragement, learning, know-how to get their.  I am at the same time fortunate and burdened by having a full time job as an oncologist / hematologist.  Hard to find the time to work on music, but at the same time am not having to worry about making an income as musician.

Thanks for carrying on the discussion.  It helps me focus.

David Young

 

 

 


David Young
 
Composer of classical-romantic style chamber and orchestral music.
 
Finale 2.4 through 2008
Laptop PC, windows XP home, 2.4 ghz, 516 Megs RAM
Desktop PC, windows XP home, Gigastudio 3.03, 2 Gigs RAM, 3 hard drives
 
Also... GPO, Gigastudio 3.0, Kontakt 2.2, KH solo strings, VSL horizon solo strings, JABB, PMI pianos, Sampletekk renaissance flutes, Marimba, percussion, Giovani, Anthrology Celtic Winds and Spiritual Winds, complete Kirk Hunter orchestral library, Kirk Hunter Diamond Library, Garritan Concert and Marching band, Garritan Stradiveri violin and Gofriller cello with very limited knowledge of how to use them but waiting to learn on a new power mac computer.
 
Join us at www.composeforums.com for discussion of music composition,
arranging and orchestration!

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Jetcopy
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   Posted 2/1/2008 3:13 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
chambermusic said...


And the other issues,... is deciding if I should try to self-publish and have my own website, etc, etc. This is something that I am currently quite a novice at, and it will take some self-encouragement, learning, know-how to get their. I am at the same time fortunate and burdened by having a full time job as an oncologist / hematologist. Hard to find the time to work on music, but at the same time am not having to worry about making an income as musician.

Thanks for carrying on the discussion. It helps me focus.

David Young


David,

If you choose to go the self publish route and set up a website for it, I remember you're saying that your next computer will be a Mac. I believe all Macs come with iLife preinstalled. iWeb is one of the app's included, and it is an extremely easy, web design software. You can sign up for a .mac account, pick an iWeb template, and put your own info in it. Place links to hear your audio files, etc. It's really easy and very intuitive. You could have a website up and running in couple hours.

I think you're very fortunate in your profession. You have the economic security that many musicians don't have. And you're able to pursue you passion for music on your terms, not somebody elses.

JT


G4 Powerbook, OSX 10.4.8, 1.67 GHz, 1.5 GB ram

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Peter West
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   Posted 2/1/2008 3:24 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
JC is absolutely right, my web site is created in iWeb.

Peter


Peter
Music Publishing Services

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Mac 2.66GHz Intel Quad, 4GB RAM /OSX.5.1 /30 inch cinema display+20 inch Cinema Display
Finale 2008a/Logic Pro Studio/Komplete/GPO/Kore 2/Max.msp (and you though Finale had a steep learning curve!!)/Pluggo

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tbmartin
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   Posted 2/1/2008 3:52 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Jetcopy said...


I think you're very fortunate in your profession. You have the economic security that many musicians don't have. And you're able to pursue you passion for music on your terms, not somebody elses.

JT

I am in that same position. Music doesn't have to pay my bills. I'm an amateur in the original sense of the word - I do it for the love of doing it.
 
I've gone the internet-based small publisher route. Dorn Publishing publishes the Saxophone Journal and a broad range of woodwind music, especially sax music. Since I focus on sax quartet music, they're a good fit. I approached them, they liked what they saw and we signed the deal. Low risk for them, since everthing is virtual: they don't have to print anything until the customer gives them money. It's low effort for me, but also low profit. But I don't care - See previous paragraph.


Terence
Using Finale 2003a, Windows 2000 XP Pro

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David Young : chambermusic
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   Posted 2/1/2008 5:10 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Yes, I should be ordering a MAC Pro tomorrow. I guess I should get the .mac account.

David


David Young
 
Composer of classical-romantic style chamber and orchestral music.
 
Finale 2.4 through 2008
Laptop PC, windows XP home, 2.4 ghz, 516 Megs RAM
Desktop PC, windows XP home, Gigastudio 3.03, 2 Gigs RAM, 3 hard drives
 
Also... GPO, Gigastudio 3.0, Kontakt 2.2, KH solo strings, VSL horizon solo strings, JABB, PMI pianos, Sampletekk renaissance flutes, Marimba, percussion, Giovani, Anthrology Celtic Winds and Spiritual Winds, complete Kirk Hunter orchestral library, Kirk Hunter Diamond Library, Garritan Concert and Marching band, Garritan Stradiveri violin and Gofriller cello with very limited knowledge of how to use them but waiting to learn on a new power mac computer.
 
Join us at www.composeforums.com for discussion of music composition,
arranging and orchestration!

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David Young : chambermusic
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   Posted 2/1/2008 7:10 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
There are two sides to the argument. If I had a publishing company like Alred's or others, at least they would make an effort on my behalf to sell the music, since it profits them to sell the music. I make a greater profit selling music myself (and maybe I should) but it would also take a lot of time and effort. I wish I had that time. Frankly, my time is limited. So... there is an appeal to me for a publisher to back me and promote my music. It may not work out, but there is that appeal. Should I be unable to find a publisher I will have to get serious about self-promoting my music.

David


David Young
 
Composer of classical-romantic style chamber and orchestral music.
 
Finale 2.4 through 2008
Laptop PC, windows XP home, 2.4 ghz, 516 Megs RAM
Desktop PC, windows XP home, Gigastudio 3.03, 2 Gigs RAM, 3 hard drives
 
Also... GPO, Gigastudio 3.0, Kontakt 2.2, KH solo strings, VSL horizon solo strings, JABB, PMI pianos, Sampletekk renaissance flutes, Marimba, percussion, Giovani, Anthrology Celtic Winds and Spiritual Winds, complete Kirk Hunter orchestral library, Kirk Hunter Diamond Library, Garritan Concert and Marching band, Garritan Stradiveri violin and Gofriller cello with very limited knowledge of how to use them but waiting to learn on a new power mac computer.
 
Join us at www.composeforums.com for discussion of music composition,
arranging and orchestration!

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Benjamin Tubb
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   Posted 2/1/2008 9:43 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
My own publishing background has been almost by chance. My publisher contacted me first about one of the composers, Henry Clay Work, on my website, and expressed interest in publishing his complete works (among the few that I have been able to collect, the other being Stephen Collins Foster. This led to my first published book, which I duly edited, compiled and registered for copyright in 2002, "Henry Clay Work: Complete Songs and Choruses" (Philadelphia: Kallisti Music Press, 2002).
 
Since then I've helped draft several songbooks for the publisher to be the Editor of, which he acknowledged that I did in their Preface's as well as paying my a yearly royalty percentage of sales. However, although I have planned, and tentavely scheduled the publications for books by most of my other "favorite" composers, from my website, my publisher's recent health has been failing, so I am planning on self-publishing each composer's works about once a year starting in 2010, entirely with Finale 2008 (or later) using its "Merge" feature, and making PDF files and Music XML files of the books, encrypted (using AES 256-bits) in ZIP archives for sale online, with possible hardcopies available on demand, if I can budget for the printer, and setup I want with a local book binder.
 
All the files on my site were transcribed with Finale which I backup at least yearly, and am now ensuring that I also create PDF versions of each score too, but MusicXML is also a viable choice. And more practical to use with Harmony Assistant with its Virtual Singer module, for digitized vocal rendered WAV or MP3 recordings.
 
 


Benjamin Tubb, Finale Engraver
F2K8a with Windows XP Pro
Webmaster of Public Domain Music (www.pdmusic.org)
Editor and Compiler of
Henry Clay Work: Complete Songs and Choruses
(Kallisti Music Press, 2002)

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Jeannie
'Tis Herself - I have the tee shirt to prove it!



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   Posted 2/9/2008 3:42 AM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
I might be able to help with the Tax Payer ID Number (just keep in mind IANAL - I Am Not A Lawyer. If you are a sole proprieter who will be filing your business taxes on Schedule C of your personal 1040, you may be able use your Social Security number for your Tax Payer ID Number.
 
 

Allegro 2005 (ex-user of the buggy PM 2006), XP Home

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Motet
Isorhythmic



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   Posted 2/9/2008 3:03 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
"Tax Payer ID Number" means either SSN or EIN, which is "employer ID number," a kind of SSN for businesses. Corporations need the latter, as do sole proprietorships for some things like certain retirement plans. Some banks want them for business accounts. It's hard to tell from the above if ASCAP requires it. But it's trivial to get an EIN instantly on the IRS website; there's no expense or risk when you do.


(Finale 2005b on Windows XP)

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michelp
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   Posted 2/9/2008 5:57 PM (GMT -5)    Quote This PostAlert An Admin About This Post.
Aram Khachaturyan said...
Publisher:
...</b> a work you published (e.g. title, name of the performer or artist, date it was released or performed)
Now, how can one provide such info when he is barely starting the company (in order to be able to publish a piece)? Information about a work you published? You are applying so that you are able to publish...?
Thanks for any explanations...

I suspect there is confusion here around the term publisher.
- A publisher can be understood as someone who makes a work public, either in recorded form (CD, etc...) or printed form (like in the book industry). A commercial contract may bind the publisher and the author (royalties, advance payments, etc...). We are not in the field of author's rights yet. In the music field, for recordings, the right word would be "producer".
- But if you are talking of "music publisher", it is a company that signs very specific contracts with the creators to share their author's rights in exchange of doing some efficient and professional promotion and circulation of the signed works.
That's the kind of publisher that is a member of collecting societies (BMI, ASCAP, PRS, GEMA, SACEM, etc....) So my guess (I'm European, and some practices differ, I know) is that to become a "music publisher" in an author's society, you have to prove that some of the works you "owe" have had some circulation, in recorded or printed form. If they accept you as a member as as "music publisher", these works would be now signed in music publishing contracts and included in your catalog. And we are talking of author's rights now.


Michel
Finale 2008a, 2007c, 2005b on a MacG5 2x2,5 Gh (2,5 Go RAM) and MacOsX 10.4.11 French azerty kb, Dolet 3.6 (for Finale Mac). 24' LCD (pivoting) + 19' LCD, both Samsung. Midi interface : MOTU Midi Express XT. Roland Sound Canvas SC88-vl. Printer : Xerox Laser Docuprint N2825 (A3)

Post Edited (michelp) : 2/9/2008 4:00:31 PM (GMT-6)

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