Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by WhatSharp?, Feb 17, 2010.

  1. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    I was listening to the Radio this morning and a locksmith shop was told to pay to have their radio on ( for the staff ) , they had a guy on from PRS - music who alleged that the money went to composers ( was even more vague about where the money goes for deceased composers ... ). We also have a radio at work for which we have to pay ( I'm told ) about £1000 a year....

    Question is ( for all those composers out there )... have any of you had a cheque from the PRS?.....
  2. John_D

    John_D Member

    A friend of mine does some composing. He gets regular cheques from the PRS, even for stuff he did years ago.
  3. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Yes they do.....eventually..... ;)
  4. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Thanks.. I did wonder...given how evasive the guy on the radio was it seemed like another beauracratic's nice to be wrong sometimes. Mind you I wonder how they work it out.
  5. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Not sure how it works in totality, but if you look here it outlines what they try to do.

    If no composers come back with more info, one of my production team is likely to know and I'll ask him for an opinion.
  6. Brian Bowen

    Brian Bowen Active Member

    Of course composers who are registered with the PRS and have their music performed in licensed premises or via broadcasting receive royalties. It sometimes comes as a surprise when recieving money for performances in places and countries least expected.
  7. Sure - PRS distributes 4 times a year (I think) and you are paid royalties for performances in concert halls, on the radio, tv etc.

    I tend to find that most of the royalties that come through are from performances/broadcasts that I didn't know about - both home and abroad.

    Again, I stand to be corrected on this, but in times gone past "classical" music royalties were subsidised by those of their pop music cousins, but this is no longer the case. So a performance in a concert hall can actually worth pennies.

    The type of concert, and the type of hall comes in to play too - one piece of mine had several entries on the statement a couple of years ago, ranging from less than a pound to a figure in the hundreds (this is, by the way, an exception!)...for the same piece!!!

    I'm not particularly sure about the mechanics of it all, but it does a job, and makes sure that composers can collect their performance royalties that are due to them (most of the time...)

    What I would say is that it is not a tax - it is the consumer paying the price for a piece of intellectual property (or not so intellectual in some people's cases!).

    I hope this hopes a little...
  8. Anglo Music Press

    Anglo Music Press Well-Known Member

    Hi Steve,

    How cynical of you!! :)

    Yes, the PRS does indeed share the money out, and pretty well, considering the complexity of the operation.

    Any business that plays music (that is heard by members of the public, I think, though it might include staff, I suppose) should have a PRS licence. It would not be viable to pay out to the composers whose music is played on that radio (administration would cost more than the licence fee) so PRS shares it out amongst its members, probably in proportion to music use that IS monitored - i.e. larger concert halls and all broadcast music. So the fees raised from such licences amount to pennies per recipient, but is the fairest way of doing it.

    I often get 14p or so for juke box use of my pieces...........
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2010
  9. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    You know, you wait for composers and then three come along at once ;)
  10. Straightmute

    Straightmute Active Member

    Yes you're right - and if my memory is correct we have Mike Batt to thank for that. Until around 1990 royalties for 'classical' music were heavily subsidised by revenue from popular music, fairly so in my opinion since a major orchestral work by a successful contemporary composer might only receive a handful of performances unlike a successful pop song which might receive many thousand airings on the radio (and generate vast amouts in record sales in addition).

    I'm having a choral piece performed at Canterbury Cathedral next week but the royalties generated probably won't cover the cost of buying a concert programme!
  11. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Thanks everyone, curiosity satisfied! ( and I won't grumble about PRS submissions from now on now I know the moneys going to where it should be going ) :)

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