Music is consumed and distributed through an increasing range of platforms and devices, from live concerts to social networking sites, mobile phone apps, films, adverts and video games to name a few. This environment creates many opportunities for artists, writers, producers and managers alike.
“Superb industry knowledge and real-world, practical application of the law stand the firm in good stead at the crossover between music and theatre.”
Chambers UK, 2010
With over 50 years’ experience, we have a real understanding of the challenges and opportunities that you will face in the music industry today. Technology has had the greatest impact in recent years and you can trust in both our specialist knowledge of the music industry, and the wider knowledge within the firm of the digital media and entertainment industries. We regularly advise clients on their dealings with online operations such as aggregators, e-commerce, and licensing through digital music libraries.
Our clients range from multinational corporations such as Universal Music International to start-up businesses in the industry. We often work with artists, writers, producers and managers at the start of their careers to help them develop their reputation and protect their rights. You can expect clear and friendly advice on both commercial and legal issues.
We can advise you on:
- Recorded music agreements – acting for both record labels and artists
- Music publishing contracts – acting for both publishers and writers
- Digital music distribution and new platforms
- Clearance rights and contracts – assisting clients with protecting their own intellectual property and helping them obtain clearances for the use of third party materials in their products (for example, sample and synchronisation licences)
- Management agreements – representing both management companies and artists. We often present to the members of the Music Managers Forum (MMF) on this topic
- Live music and tours – advising both tour promoters and artists, as well as advising on public performance licences for live events
- Merchandising and sponsorship agreements – advising both corporate clients and individuals in the industry
- Music litigation and dispute resolution - including copyright infringement, audit claims and agreement termination issues.
CLIENTS AND WORK HIGHLIGHTS
We have worked within the music industry since the 1960s. Through the decades we have acted for a number of high profile record and publishing companies, together with many well-known artists and bands including Roxy Music, Eurhythmics, Annie Lennox, The Spice Girls, PJ Harvey, and Robbie Williams.
We have a strong presence through the UK and US record industries, assisted by our attendance at numerous industry events, including SXSW in Austin, CMJ in New York, Glastonbury, MIDEM in Cannes and The Great Escape in Brighton.
Acting for Conor in relation to his recording and publishing agreements with Parlophone and Universal Music Publishing respectively.
We advised Jamie Cullum on his arrangements with Pizza Express to promote Pizza Express’ music talent search competition, ‘The Big Audition with Jamie Cullum’, which launched in July 2011.
Diageo (‘Smirnoff Presents Sensation’ event)
We advised Diageo in relation to all of the contractual arrangements for the ‘Smirnoff presents Sensation’, a DJ led live dance music collaboration which is being held at the O2 Arena on 13 August 2011. This involved advising on various sponsorship, staging, co-production and co-branding, licensing and rights exploitation issues as well as the venue arrangements with AEG to hire the O2 Arena for the event.
Advising DreamWorks in respect of various music clearances relating to the motion picture ‘War Horse’.
(Simian Mobile Disco and producer of Arctic Monkeys/Florence & The Machine)
Acting for James Ford on his recent Publishing Agreement with Warner Music.
Advising McCann Erickson on a number of copy clearance and production issues, including above and below the line campaigns, copy clearance, music and celebrity endorsements.
Omnifone – Sony Ericsson
Advised Omnifone on their revolutionary unlimited music subscription service PlayNow™, which allows subscribers to download music to their mobile phones.