New legislation was introduced to Congress by the U.S. House of Representatives that would give producers, engineers and mixers — the unsung heroes in the song-making process — a piece of the digital royalty pie. The proposed legislation is called The Allocation for Music Producer Act, or “AMP Act,” and for those keeping score, the Bill Number is H.R. 1457. The bill is off to a good start since it was formally introduced by congressmen from both parties; Joe Crowley (D-New York) and Tom Rooney (R-Florida).
Despite their indispensable role in the creation of sound recordings, music producers have never been mentioned in any part of the copyright law.
In the past it has been up to the producers, engineers and mixers to negotiate their own splits on royalty payments. The AMP Act would create a statutory right for producers to receive royalties. This would give producers, engineers and mixers the right to a piece of the digital royalties pie when this is becoming an increasingly important revenue stream because of streaming.
The AMP Act provides a consistent, permanent process by which producers and engineers will receive the royalties they deserve for the contributions they make to the creation of music.
This new framework will also give studio personnel the ability to negotiate with artists on works older than 1995, when the 45 percent digital royalty rate for artists was established.
“Without producers and engineers, the music we enjoy every day couldn’t make it from the recording studio to our radios and phones,” said Rooney. “Our bipartisan bill makes sure that hardworking studio professionals receive the royalties they earned in a fair and streamlined manner.”
You can read the proposed bill here.
Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor