Why Can’t I Play Music On My Podcast?

This is a question I’m often asked by those just launching their podcasts. It is a crucial question then one that also has legal ramifications. So, ok, i’ll begin this answer using this legally important statement.

I am not only a lawyer. I do not offer legal services. The information I am providing here mustn’t be considered as legal services. I am only offering this as my perspective with this topic. If you want to know the legal side on this issue, I urge to discover a qualified attorney within your locality.

OK, seeing that has been covered, ok, i’ll get back to your question, “Why Can’t I Play Music on My Podcast?”

The response is – YOU CAN be a guitrist on your podcast! The only qualification is you must own the copyrights on the music. In other words, it ought to be music you created. That means writing the songs, the lyrics and performed or recorded a similar. With nobody but you in the music activity.

Now that any of us eliminated 99.99% on the public from that group of music professionals, let’s address ordinary people in how WE can be a musician on our podcast.

First, an instant background.

Radio stations involve streaming music with their listeners. If you are paying royalty and licensing fees for the large firms that handle this type of thing inside the United States, there is a ability to stream music that is certainly released inside the United States. If you pay Sound Exchange, you will find the right to publicly perform the songs that is released inside the United States. It is these rights that permit you conduct Internet streaming or “Internet Radio” kind of operation.

I say “United States” because each country possesses his own laws and copyright and royalty laws and organizations.

Which does mean, because you have permission to experience (stream) this inside the United States, you don’t need the directly to do so overseas.

This is the place where it gets complicated for online platforms, for example podcasts.

To get even more complicated, podcasts will not be considered “streaming platforms.” Nor is he considered “public performances.”

Under the “Copyright Act,” a recording does not require the public performance right, instead it covers the to certainly “reproduce” the project or sound recording.

Then, to consider it a pace further, as the songs is together with the other parts of your podcast (i.e. speaking, teaching, etc.), you’ve changed the essential purpose of the background music from its intended creation and repurposed it for a use. This invokes a different form of copyright. You now need the directly to change it, to create “master rights.”

You have often heard modern versions of old songs we loved as kids, right? These artists obtained the “master rights” to make this happen. Master Rights have to be purchased individually through the copy right holders. Which is the publishers of the music activity and the record company for your sound recording. You must negotiate with everybody for each song you need to use.

In your next segment, I’ll focus on that pesky little phrase of “Fair Use.” You know, like only using 15 or 20 seconds of one’s favorite song inside your intro our outro.

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