For awhile now I have been getting questions sent to me about what is in a typical Producer Contract. So here, bit by bit in this posting, and in some future ones I will quote sections from a producer's contract that I have seen.
But before I post the first section of it. PLEASE REMEMBER that ANY contract is open to negotiations, and I am NOT an Entertainment Law Attorney but I know a few :-)
Very few contracts in the music industry are the same for everyone, and a Producers Agreement is no exception, so without further ado here is a section from a Producer's Agreement for you to read, and perhaps fall asleep to.
"GRANT OF RIGHTS"
Producer and Artist agree that each Master, and all derivatives thereof (but not including the underlying compositions), (collectively "Works") shall constitute "works made for hire" as that term is defined under 17 U.S.C. sec. 101, and the author and owner of the Works is deemed to be Artist (or its authorized designee).
In any event, Producer does hereby assign, transfer and set over to Artist, its successors and assigns, one hundred percent (100%) of Artist's entire right, title and interest, including without limitation any and all so-called "moral rights," in and to the Works, together with all copyrights therein and thereto throughout the world and any and all renewals and extensions of copyright therein now known or hereafter existing under any law, rule, statute and/or regulation now known or hereafter enacted or promulgated, and including without limitation the exclusive right to administer such copyrights.
The Works shall be the sole and exclusive property of Artist in perpetuity, free from any claim whatsoever by Producer. Producer will execute and deliver to Artist such instruments of transfer and other documents regarding the rights of Artist in the Works as Artist may reasonably request to carry out the purposes of this agreement and Producer will sign any and all necessary documents to effectuate the disposition of same.
Artist shall have the unlimited, perpetual right to exploit the Works for all purposes by any means or media now or hereafter devised, and in any form whatsoever, under any trademarks, trade names and labels with no additional compensation payable to Producer other than as stated herein, it being understood that Producer shall have the right to grant and negotiate and grant all licenses sought and obtained for derivative works.
Neither the expiration nor termination of the agreement pursuant to which the Works were produced shall affect the ownership by Artist of the Works it being understood, however, that the Recordings shall remain the sole and exclusive property of Producer until all monies, as mentioned below in paragraph 3(a), due Producer by Artist are received by Producer."
Now, wasn't that fun and exciting?! I 'love' legal language...not.
Anyway as you read this,in many cases the Producer will demand a percentage of the royalties due from the work he/she has produced.So re-read this section carefully...
" Artist shall have the unlimited, perpetual right to exploit the Works for all purposes by any means or media now or hereafter devised, and in any form whatsoever, under any trademarks, trade names and labels with no additional compensation payable to Producer other than as stated herein, it being understood that Producer shall have the right to grant and negotiate and grant all licenses sought and obtained for derivative works.
So, don't be surprised if your Producer demands more than a fee for his/her Production work. Read the legal langquage carefully!