Tag Archives: Ron Mendelsohn

Learn your musical rights at upcoming PMA Conference in Hollywood

The Production Music Conference (PMC) will be held at the Directors Guild of America Theater Complex in Hollywood on September 9. The PMC is open to the public, and may be of special interest to composers, music publishers and music users, including music supervisors and clients who license music for film, television and other media.

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Ron Mendelsohn

Ron Mendelsohn, CEO/co-founder of Megatrax Production Music and secretary/co-founder of the Production Music Association, will be moderating a panel on legal considerations for music libraries at the event. Mendelsohn’s “Blurred Lines: Legal Considerations for Music Libraries,” asks: “Production music libraries are often asked for sound-a-likes, but is it legal? What are the legal ramifications of re-titling? To what extent can loops and samples be incorporated into a library cue?” It will also cover potential legal risks and pitfalls that all successful production music libraries must navigate in order to survive and thrive.

The Blurred Lines panel features John Houlihan, music supervisor/ president of Guild of Music Supervisors; David Helfant, attorney, Arpeggio Entertainment; Cary Ginell, musicologist, Sound Thinking Music Research; and John Graham, composer.

Mendelsohn conceived of this panel to arm his peers with an awareness of the legal boundaries of inspiration and sampling when creating new work, while remaining respectful of the role inspiration plays in the creative process.

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L-R: David Helfant and John Graham are just two of the panelists on “Blurred Lines.”

In his recent article for the Megatrax blog, “Will the Blurred Lines Decision Stifle Creativity’?,” he said, “Finding inspiration is not the same thing as plagiarism. Of course we must respect and enforce copyright law and protect creators from the threat of blatant infringement. For example, if a new work in toto appropriates an existing theme, melody, lyric or hook, a case for infringement may well be warranted. However creating a song with a similar ‘feel’ or ‘groove’ or using similar instrumentation or chords is simply not grounds for infringement since such elements are not protectable. Musical works are not created ‘out of the blue’; they do not appear out of nothingness like the big bang. Virtually nothing in music can be truly said to be 100% new and original. Every new work is sparked by inspiration and builds on what came before. We need to be vigilant about giving creators the freedom to find inspiration anywhere and thereby allowing the arts to flourish for future generations.”

 

Music Rights: A look at the DOJ’s consent decree review

By Ron Mendelsohn

The US Department of Justice is currently undergoing an extensive review of the ASCAP and BMI consent decrees. Established in 1941, the consent decrees constitute a set of guidelines and rules that govern the operations for these two major performance rights organizations (PROs).

At the time when the consent decrees were established, the PROs were widely seen as wielding a monopoly over music licensing and it is therefore somewhat understandable that the DOJ imposed restrictions on the scope of their operations in an effort to curtail their power and make music more available and affordable to licensees such as radio stations, TV stations, bars and restaurants.

However, nothing could be further from the truth today. As performances shift online and Continue reading

Here are three things to consider when choosing a music library

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By Ron Mendelsohn

There are many different types of production music companies on the market. Since different business models and offerings exist, it’s important to do your due diligence before deciding which company to work with. Here are three things to consider before deciding on your vendor.

Does your production music company commission new, original music or broker pre-existing music?

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