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Song Lyrics on stage during a performance

Discussion in 'Copyright, Trademark, Patent Law' started by madelin dominguez, Apr 25, 2019.

  1. madelin dominguez

    madelin dominguez Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
    Florida
    Do you need to clear and license song lyrics if used in the background of the stage while an artist is performing that song?
     
  2. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You can start educating yourself here:

    Understand Music Royalties

    Good luck.
     
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  3. madelin dominguez

    madelin dominguez Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Thanks, good page I'm familiar with those but the lyric reprint portion is the one I can't locate information on.
     
  4. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    I don't know what you mean. If the artist is singing a song for which he has a license, then what is going on in the background that raises the question?
     
  5. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Well-Known Member

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    If the artist is projecting the text of the lyrics on a screen behind the artist while the artist is singing the song, that may well raise a problem. The license that the artist has to perform the song would need to include the right to project the lyrics as well as to sing the song.
     
  6. KatDini

    KatDini Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like Karaoke to me. I'd suggest looking up that kind of license.
     
  7. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Got it. Like this:

     
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  8. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    Not entirely clear what you're contemplating, but, assuming the song is not in the public domain, the copyright owner(s) have the exclusive right to do or license other to do the following things:

    (1) to reproduce the copyrighted work in copies or phonorecords;
    (2) to prepare derivative works based upon the copyrighted work;
    (3) to distribute copies or phonorecords of the copyrighted work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending;
    (4) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works, to perform the copyrighted work publicly;
    (5) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works, including the individual images of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, to display the copyrighted work publicly; and
    (6) in the case of sound recordings, to perform the copyrighted work publicly by means of a digital audio transmission.

    I agree. Many public performance venues are covered by blanket licenses from ASCAP and BMI (which license upward of 90% of popular music in the U.S.), so no specific license would be needed, but that blanket license would not cover the display of lyrics on a screen or otherwise.
     

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