• Clement S. Sealy, Jr.

Revenue For Musicians: II Performers and III Sound Recordings Or Recording Artist Income

Updated: May 14, 2019

Continuing the Revenue for Musicians series, parts of the series are centered on monetizing your talents for performances and recordings in various revenue plateaus that are available.


II: performer-related income


7. Salary as Member of Orchestra or Ensemble Income earned as a salaried member of an orchestra or ensemble.

8. Shows/Performance Fees Revenue generated from playing in a live setting for those who are non-salaried players.



III: Sound Recording or Recording Income


Digital Sales

Revenue generated from selling music digitally/online. Paid to artist/performer by your label, or digital aggregators like CD Baby or Tunecore, or directly from fans via services like Bandcamp.


Cloud Storage Payments

Revenue generated from services that charge customers to store their music catalogs in the cloud. Paid to artist/performer by your label, or digital aggregators like CD Baby or Tunecore.


Interactive Service Payments

Revenue generated when your music is streamed on on-demand services (Rhapsody, Spotify, Rdio). Paid to performer by your label, or digital aggregator like CD Baby or Tunecore.


Digital Performance Royalties

Revenue generated when your sound recordings are played on internet radio, Sirius XM, Pandora. Paid to performers by SoundExchange.


AARC Royalties

Collected for digital recording of your songs, foreign private copying levies, and foreign record rental royalties, distributed to US artists by AARC.


Label Settlements

Payments from labels to recording artists for litigation settlements ( MP3.com, Limewire).


AFM/AFTRA Payments

Payments from the

AFM/AFTRA Intellectual Property Rights Distribution Fund, which distributes recording and performance royalties to non-featured artists.


Record Label Advance Paid to artist as part of signing a deal.

Record Label Support Money from label for recording or tour support.

Sales at Shows Revenue generated from selling recordings of music at shows/live performances. Paid to artist/performer directly by fans.

AFM/Secondary Markets Fund Paid to performers on recordings used in film, TV and other secondary uses by the Film Musicians’ Secondary Markets Fund.

AFM/Sound Recording Special Payments These are paid to performers for the sales of recorded music by the Sound Recording Special record label, or via a direct licensing deal with the licensee (movie studio, ad agency, etc) if you are self-published. *Expanded: Not only are there a lot more opportunities for synchs to occur because of platform growth, there are also new rights including the digital synchronization license (YouTube, Vimeo).


Retail Sales Revenue generated from selling physical music in retail stores or via mailorder. Paid to artist/performer by your label, or services like CD Baby or Bandcamp that help musicians sell physical product. *Expanded: The internet and various services have greatly expanded the number of opportunities to sell physical product (Amazon, CD Baby, Bandcamp).


Neighboring Rights Royalties Collected for the foreign performance of your

recordings. *Expanded: SoundExchange has reciprocal agreements with a handful of foreign performing rights societies, which now allows for the flow of these monies back to US-based performers.


digitally/online.

Paid to artist/performer by your label, or digital aggregators like CD Baby or Tunecore, or directly from fans via services like Bandcamp.


Cloud Storage Payments

Revenue generated from services that charge customers to store their music catalogs in the cloud. Paid to artist/performer by your label, or digital aggregators like CD Baby or Tunecore.

26. Interactive Service Payments

Revenue generated when your music is streamed on on-demand services (Rhapsody, Spotify, Rdio). Paid to performer by your label, or digital aggregator like CD Baby or Tunecore.


Digital Performance Royalties Revenue generated when your sound recordings are played on internet radio, Sirius XM, Pandora. Paid to performers by SoundExchange.


AARC Royalties

Collected for digital recording of your songs, foreign private copying levies, and foreign record rental royalties, distributed to US artists by AARC.


Label Settlements Payments from labels to recording artists for litigation settlements (examples are MP3-dot com, Limewire).


AFM/AFTRA Payments

Payments from the AFM/AFTRA Intellectual Property Rights Distribution Fund, which distributes recording and performance royalties to non-featured artists.


AFTRA Contingent Scale

Payments paid to performers when a recording hits certain sales areas.

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