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Re: OT: ASCAP/BMI and music licensing

Yeah, but as you resent the cafe owner collecting money at the end of
a night and driving home in his Merc, there are plenty of coffeehouse
musicians who aren't eligible for ASCAP health care who aren't going
to be moved by your dental care windfall at the expense of their
monthly gig.

The reason to play places that don't pay you is that the need to play
music is great, the number of musicians willing to play for no direct
monetary compensation is large, and the number of paying places is
small.  I mean, they don't pay the painters who hang their art on the
wall for a month either, but artists need exposure, whereas cafes
don't really need local art and music.

On 5/20/05, hazard factor <artists@hazardfactor.com> wrote:
>  I totally understand this viewpoint, and the one that punishes musicians
> who do cover tunes...what if the original music the performer is playing 
> licensed though (just extremely unknown?)? There are lots of original
> performers around here that belong to BMI and ASCAP. While my check from
> ASCAP is small, I do, however have access to pretty good dental 
>insurance as
> well a gear insurance and discounts on lots of other stuff.
> These days, if you have a bar, you have to pay to show NFL games, 
>etc..it is
> part of the costs of doing business. In the end, I would rather see 
>money go
> to professional musicians rather than sports teams. Looking at it from 
> other side, if a coffeehouse pays ASCAP, they *just might* realize that
> music is worth paying for. If they refuse to pay, why play there?
> I have done many free shows at coffeehouses, performing for grateful 
> who genuinely are living week-to-week, and want to support original live
> music.
> I have also played for owners that drive up at 12am in their Very 
> Car, count the money, grumble a bit, and then leave $10 less than we 
> upon for the musician (me). If this guy has to play ASCAP, BMI or any 
> organization, I honestly don't care. (BTW, I refused future bookings at 
> place).
> There are no easy solutions, but if ASCAP can help me out when I had all 
> wisdom teeth pulled last year (a few $k, normally, about $700 for me), 
> does help.
> Dave Eichenberger
> http://www.hazardfactor.com
> >
> > The 60's may be "so over", but the idea of intellectual
> > property has taken a serious hit in recent years.  BMI and
> > ASCAP are still clinging to a business model from decades ago
> > when the means of production were much more concentrated than
> > they ever will be again.  And most local musicians will never
> > see any significant money from BMI or ASCAP because it's got
> > no efficient way of measuring what music is actually being
> > played and performed and because most grass-roots musicians
> > receive negligable airplay.
> >
> > I suspect that there's a lot of small venues who aren't going
> > to pay for performance licenses and are just going to stop
> > having live music, which isn't good for music, and probably
> > not good for the music industry in the long run.  You can't
> > choke off the minor leagues like that without seeing a
> > dropoff in the talent pool a few years down the road.  As far
> > as I'm concerned, BMI, ASCAP and the Musician's Union are
> > worthless to me.  The only time I hear about them is when
> > they take opportunities away from musicians, because there's
> > more of us on the bottom than the top.
> >