Dear Friends,

We are pleased to announce the publication of the 4th Edition of Kohn On Music Licensing.
We have been humbled by the overwhelming response to the book since its original publication. Now widely considered "the bible" of music law, it has found a permanent place on the shelves of both professional music practitioners and newcomers to music law and copyright licensing.
But there have been profound changes in the music business--especially over the past two years--and we felt a substantial revision/update was in order. We are pleased to present the 4th Edition now available from Aspen Law & Business Publishers.

We hope you find this new edition both useful and entertaining. In the meantime, drop us a note. We'd love to hear from you.

Al Kohn & Bob Kohn
Kohn On Music Licensing

P.S. If you own a prior edition and are wondering whether to upgrade to the 4th Edition, your decision should be easy. Much has changed since the last edition (see below), and the new edition covers the new developments in depth. You won't be disappointed.

Bob Kohn & Al Kohn

Al & Bob Kohn explain what's new in the 4th Edition at 2010 ASCAP conference.

What's New in the 4th Edition?

Readers of prior editions will find that, in the new edition (now 1,803 pages), every chapter has been updated and important new chapters have been added.
New topics include:

  • The new mechanical license fee regimes, including rates for ringtones and on-demand streaming for U.S., Canada, and the United Kingdom.
  • The new webcasting rates in the U.S., Canada, and U.K., including rates for on-demand streams and permanent downloads of sound recordings.
  • All new chapter on User Generated Content and the new YouTube agreements.
  • All new introductory chapter on what went wrong and what went right in the music business and where music licensing is headed.
  • Updated Print License chapter, including digital print, lyrics databases, and digital guitar tabs.
  • Updated Synch License chapter, including coverage of downloading and streaming of video.
  • Updated international subpublishing chapter, with an expanation of the changes revolutionizing music publishing in Europe
  • Updated chapters on New Uses, Fair Use, and Digital Sampling.
  • Updated "typical fees" chapter.
  • Over 100 new forms--on a CD-ROM included with the book!

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: The Music Business--Its Past & Future

Walks the reader through the history of the music publishing business, from Tin Pan Alley to the user-generated content phenomena of the present. Explores where music licensing may be headed. Will we learn from past mistakes?

2. The Art of Music Publishing

Provides the basics of modern music publishing, the organization of music publishers, and traditional and emerging sources of income.

3. Songwriter Agreements

Dissects the songwriter agreement, providing the reader with a clause-by-clause analysis and offering the best negotiating strategies to achieve the best possible outcome for their clients.

4. Co-Publishing & Administration Agreements

Guides the reader through the complexities of co-publishing agreements, administration agreements, and collection agreements.

5. International Subpublishing

Clause-by-clause analysis of international subpublishing agreements, with a report on how European anti-trust law is changing the music licensing landscape in Europe.

6.  The Split Copyright Syndrome

The problem is only getting worse.

7. The Language of Music Licensing

The author's classic introduction to copyright ownership, joint works, divisibility of copyright, and drafting etiquette.

8. Formalities of Music Licensing

Explains the formalities of copyright assignment and licensing--written, oral, implied, and by operation of law.

9. Duration of Copyright, Assignments & Licenses

Tackles the most difficult subjects of copyright duration, renewal, and termination of transfers under the U.S. Copyright Act.

10. Basic Considerations in Music Licensing

Presents the fundamentals of licensing followed by a detailed analysis of common boilerplate provisions in license agreements.

11. The Art of Granting & Clearing Music Licenses

Practical advice to those who need to clear music licenses and to copyright owners seeking to maximize the value of their catalogs.

12. Licensing Music in Print & Digital Print (Print Licenses) 
Packed with the latest information on digital print, including downloadable sheet music, lyric databases, and user-generated electronic guitar tabs.
13. Licensing Music in Sound Recordings (Mechanical Licenses)

The latest on mechanical licensing for permanent downloads, ringtones, and on-demand streaming in the U.S., Canada, and the United Kingdom.

14. Licensing Music in Background Music Services, Digital Jukeboxes, and Other Commercial Reproductions
(Electrical Transcription Licenses)

Includes the latest typical fees paid by these services to music pubilhsers.

15. Licensing Music in Audiovisual Works (Synchronization Licenses)

Explains the latest "steps deals" and how publishers are approaching downloading and on-demand streaming of films and TV shows.

16. The User-Generated Content Phenomenon

What music publishers are doing to address the user-generated content problem. Explores the YouTube agreements. 

17. Old Licenses, New Uses

Explores whether synch licenses issued long ago apply to the downloading or on-demand streaming of films and TV shows.

18. Licensing Music In Live & Recorded Public Performances 
(Performance Licenses)

Explains the basics of performance licensing and developments in licensing performances on the Internet.

19. The Grand Rights Controversy

Explains the difference between grand rights, dramatic performances, and dramatic adaptations and clears up current confusion on this controversial subject.

20. Licensing Music in Television, Radio, Print, and Internet Advertising

Covers the basics of licensing music in commercial advertisements, including internet advertising.

21. Licensing Music in Music Boxes, Consumer Musical Products, and Other Merchandise

Covers the business and legal considerations of licensing music in commercial merchandise.

 22. Licensing Music in Videogames, Other New Media, Multimedia Devices, and Online Versions
Explores new media and its impact on the licensing process. Technological developments have forced the industry to rethink licenses when dealing with videogames, computer software, and karaoke.
23. Licensing of Sound Recordings (Master Use Licenses, Digital Downloading, and Digital Audio Transmissions)

Takes on the intricacies of licensing sound recordings, from the traditional CD format to the newer delivery methods, including downloads, streams, ringtones and ringbacks.

24. The Digital Sampling Controversy
Practical advice on licensing music and sound recordings in digital samples.
25. The Fair Use Controversy

Explores the ever-evolving concept of Fair Use and its application to the music industry.

26. Typical License Fees

Provides "going rates" for the various kinds of music licenses. It has been said this chapter alone is worth far more than the price of the book.

Appendix -- includes many of the most important provisions of the Copyright Act affecting music licensing, PLUS a CD-ROM containing 170 license forms

About 100 new forms since the previous edition.