Category Archives: Licensing

Music Licensing Directories

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression before that in the music business “it’s who you know”. There is some truth to this idea but it doesn’t mean that if you don’t already know someone working in the business that you can’t get to know them. The music business is a business that consists of a vast network of relationships and the more people you have in your network of business relationships the more opportunities you will find coming your way. But EVERYONE starts at the beginning so to speak, so don’t worry if you don’t already know the right people. Get to know them! You can very easily start introducing yourself and building relationships by being proactive and promoting yourself. It worked for me and I know it can work for you too!

One of the best ways to get to know people working in the music licensing industry, if you don’t have any connections, is to use music licensing contact directories. You can easily get contact information for music supervisors, music libraries and music publishers by using these music industry resources. Some places accept unsolicited submissions and some don’t, so make sure to contact each company first to confirm that they’re open to hearing your submission. There’s no point in taking the time and effort to submit your music if it’s not going to be listened to. There are however MANY companies that are open to submissions from unknown songwriters, so don’t let the fact that a few places don’t accept unsolicited submissions deter you.

Where do you find music licensing contact directories. There are several available. My company, How To LIcense Your, offers a great industry directory that is updated each year. Visit my website for more information. Also try simply searching on Google for “music Licensing DIrectory” and I’m sure you’ll find other resources. There are plenty of people waiting to hear your music if you’ll only take the time and effort to find them!

-By: Aaron Davison

Aaron Davison is a Berklee College Of music Alumnus who has been working in the music business for over ten years. His songs have been heard on a variety of television shows and he has performed live throughout the world. Visit Aaron’s website,, for more information on getting your songs placed in TV and Film.

Licensing means granting permission for the use of one’s music to which you own the copyright

Licensing is a great way to make money by placing your songs in film, TV, commercials and video games. This article explains what licensing is and how it works so that you can join the legions of music artists who are enjoying additional income from having their music licensed.

What is licensing?

Licensing means granting permission for the use of one’s music to which you own the copyright.

Certainly the goal of an artist who writes their own music (a la the copyright owner) is to maximize the revenues generated by the musical composition.

When you license the use of your song, say in a TV show, you not only get a fee for the use of the license, but it gives the song and the artist greater exposure to the listening public, which can increase one’s fame and fortune. The use of music in the TV program, “The OC,” has launched the careers of several previously unknown independent artists, Rooney, in particular.

Before we dive into how to get your music licensed, we need to go over some terms that are commonly used with licensing.


Be sure to file a completed copyright form along with a copy of the music with the US Copyright office before attempting to license your songs.

You can find the forms and instructions at There are two copyrights for a song; a copyright for the sound recording (Form SR) and a copyright for the underlying song (Form PA). For our purposes here, let’s clarify that we are talking about licensing original music of an Independent Artist who is not signed to a label or a publishing company and who owns both these copyrights.


Publishing is one of the most complex parts of the music business and yet it can be the most lucrative area of income for musicians. music publishing is the owning and exploiting of musical copyrights. A song is made up of two equal shares: the writer’s share and the publisher’s share. Songwriters affiliate with Publishers because their main job is to commercially exploit (increase use and value of) songs. Most independent artists/musicians are their own publisher, and therefore own 100% share of the song. If that is you, then this is why you want to get educated on how to pursue licensing for your music.


The license for use of the sound recording is called theMaster Use License. The license for the underlying song is called the Synchronization License (aka synch license), used when a musical work is synchronized in time with visual images, either background, theme or feature use in TV shows and Film.

Now we know the basic terms…time to learn what to do next.

Do your research by watching existing TV programs and write down every show you think your songs would fit into. From TV programs including reality TV, types of scenes in movies, video games, and commercials. Learn to think and listen visually; everything visual has a potential sound accompaniment.