Author: jakekelly

Credit Where Credit is Due

I was recently asked why sometimes the entire band is listed in songwriting credits, yet, other times it might be one member or one member who writes the lyrics and another who writes the music. They also asked if the whole band played on the record, don’t they deserve songwriting credit? Basically, a song is a song. It is composed by one or two (or more) people, and it generally recognized as being complete. It can still be tweaked, but the door is closed on claiming credit. Changing a word or nixing a line doesn’t entitle anyone to writing credit (unless for some reason the actual writer grants them some). After the song is written and it is brought to the band or session musicians, the band contributes to the song’s “arrangement.” Usually, the arrangement (placement of verses, chourses, bridge, solos, riffs, and musical hooks) do not warrant songwriting credit. By the way, you can not copyright a chord progression or a solo. When rappers have used chucks of a recording sample of say, a rock record key riff, the deal was it was a violation of the sound recording copyright, not the song copyright. When session players are hired, it is “work for hire” meaning they are paid the one-time fee and are not entitled to shares of the songs profit. Actually, this is not entirely true, it...

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How Soundmen Can Keep Me Happy

What is the deal with soundmen?  I wish my job was as simple as twisting a couple of knobs…I have the responsibility of entertaining all the fans: so what’s up with the snide remarks, the heavy sighs, and passive-aggressive behavior?   But, you know what?   I’m a bridge builder.  I’m not one who just complains (though I am prone to complaining); I’m also a problem solver.   So, here is a handy guide for soundmen (and soundwomen) to keep me happy, with an explanation of each point.  It can also be found here (without the explanations) as a printable PDF file so you can keep a reference copy at the mixer board that is out there with the fans and another one for the other mixer board on the side of the stage.     10.  Be Ready When I Get There.   You know when soundcheck is scheduled, so just have everything ready at that time.  This is so simple.  See, if you have everything set to go before soundcheck, you can hang out and wait for me to get there.   Let’s review a past scenario:  You couldn’t have the stage set up because you didn’t finish load out last night until 2 in the morning?    Guess what?    I was out partying until 5 and I was able to show up (more or less)...

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