Page 7 of 7 FirstFirst ... 34567
Results 151 to 157 of 157

Thread: NASCAP charging for bluegrass jams!?

  1. #151
    Registered User Gan Ainm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Athens, Georgia, Nelson Co. Virgina
    Posts
    109

    Default Re: NASCAP charging for bluegrass jams!?

    Most of us (at least on the Mandolin Cafe!) DO have a reasonable "moral compass" and want to see songwriters fairly paid. However when enough people see a system that time and again does not represent fair payment to the "little guy" and acts like a bully, than we say "nuts". There are many other cases like this where actions are disguised as "fair compensation" but are in fact fair to only a small sector, usually those already "in control", and "just don't use/buy/play it" doesn't cut it. So the system "evolves", sometimes rationally, often more by "social Darwinism".
    As I once said:
    "The moral high ground is hard to hold".
    Gan Ainm
    AKA Colin, Athens GA and Nelson Co. VA when I can

  2. #152
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Berkeley, CA
    Posts
    1,629

    Default Re: NASCAP charging for bluegrass jams!?

    In an "ideal" world, the money collected from each venue would be apportioned to the songwriters [and publishers] whose songs were actually performed at that venue. Money collected from a bluegrass jam would go to compensate the writers [and publishers] of bluegrass songs.

    In practice, of course, that's totally infeasible. ASCAP and BMI (and SESAC and others) allocate (some of) the $$ they collect across songwriters [and publishers] according to a formula. That formula is far from perfect; it clearly and systematically "underweights" certain types of music in favor of other, "more popular" music, based on considerations (such as airplay) that have little to do with the actual performing patterns of live acoustic music.

    Because there's at best a very weak "link" between the music we play at live venues and the $$ that "our" songwriters receive, some live performers think the system is "broken" and that ASCAP/BMI are money-grubbing for-profit entities. I sympathize, but it's NOT a simple or straight-forward task to work out a "better" solution.

    In this country at least, songwriters and publishers have a choice of which performing rights organization to join (ASCAP, BMI and SESAC). Each uses a different "formula" to allocate royalties received across different songwriters/publishers. Songwriters (and publishers) have been known to decide which performing rights organization to join based on this sort of consideration.

    So the comment above about "Social Darwinism" has some merit: if all songwriters thought that ASCAP was screwing them, while BMI was treating them fairly, then over time one would expect to see songwriters "vote with their feet" by quitting ASCAP and moving to BMI.

    Indeed, as I recall, BMI was formed -- at least in part -- because some 'upstart' composers of popular music believed that ASCAP's policies were biased against them and in favor of composers of more 'serious' music -- though the stronger explanation was that ASCAP significantly raised the royalty rates that it charged for the use of recorded ASCAP-controlled material on radio broadcasts on the grounds that composers/publishers were not being adequately compensated. The radio stations didn't want to pay the much-higher royalties that ASCAP was demanding, but wanted something to play that wasn't subject to the ASCAP license, and they signed up composers and publishers of non-ASCAP material (including blues, country, and gospel) into the new "Broadcast Music Inc." entity (hence the name!). Hence the popularity of older public domain material (especially Stephen Foster songs) and Latin music [whose writers/publishers were not affiliated with ASCAP) during the 1939-41 period.


    I agree that this is not something that performers can affect very much; most venues need to (or do) get licenses from both ASCAP and BMI.
    Last edited by EdSherry; Dec-12-2011 at 8:16pm.
    EdSherry

  3. #153
    Registered User Gan Ainm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Athens, Georgia, Nelson Co. Virgina
    Posts
    109

    Default Re: NASCAP charging for bluegrass jams!?

    Thanks Ed for that thoughtful comment and background.
    Gan Ainm
    AKA Colin, Athens GA and Nelson Co. VA when I can

  4. #154
    Unfamous String Buster Beanzy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Cornwall & London
    Posts
    2,598
    Blog Entries
    3

    Default Re: NASCAP charging for bluegrass jams!?

    Shouldn't artists who feel their music is being under weighted from live performance fees be mounting some sort of challenge?. There's real money at stake here. In this day and age they should be doing regular sample surveys of jams sessions and gigs by region and allocating the fees based on those. So if they want the moral high ground they should step up and put in place practices that ensure fairness by using modern methods and not some skewed air-play figures. I'd imagine there would be many folk, trad and bluegrass musicians who were one heck of a lot better compensated if this were the case.
    Eoin



    "Forget that anyone is listening to you and always listen to yourself" - Fryderyk Chopin

  5. #155
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Sugar Grove,PA
    Posts
    2,430
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: NASCAP charging for bluegrass jams!?

    WOW,man!!!!!,<Comment removed by Moderator>,Maybe we'll all figure it out one day?
    Last edited by MikeEdgerton; Dec-23-2011 at 9:00am.

  6. #156
    Registered User Mandobart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    2,904

    Default Re: NASCAP charging for bluegrass jams!?

    Well this issue just took out a local musical get together. Friends of mine own a little all-ages pool/ping-pong/darts place. Recently another friend started jam nights there on Mondays, encouraging young (under 21) performers and a couple special-needs young people. It was a very supportive, friendly atmosphere where friends could play together and visit. I went down to play tonight and there were no other musicians. I asked "where is everyone?" and the answer was "ever hear of ASCAP?" Just like others have posted, the lawyers showed up and demanded several thousand $$. When the owners said they couldn't afford it, ASCAP lawyer asked "how much can you afford?" They were threatened so coughed over some money to make ASCAP go away, and now there is no music, not even a radio broadcast. ASCAP nearly convinced them they couldn't have TV on either. I know its legal, but that doesn't make it right. Its legal that all the big banks and big insurance companies get bailed out by us taxpayers, too.

  7. #157
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Outer Spiral Arm, of Galaxy, NW Oregon.
    Posts
    15,700

    Default Re: NASCAP charging for bluegrass jams!?

    not singing and never even covering the bar tab, so I'm safe..
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •