Music fans were treated to a Valentine’s surprise last week when hip-hop pioneers De La Souloffered up their acclaimed back catalog for free download through their official website. Pretty awesome for fans and newcomers alike. Still, this giveaway comes with a complicated backstory, one marked by deep frustration with the state of sample clearances. In particular, De La Soul are emblematic of challenges facing artists in an environment of corporate mergers and major label ownership. read more
It’s hard to believe we’re getting so close to the 2011 Future of Music Policy Summit (Oct. 3-4, Georgetown University, Washington, DC). If you aren’t alrady registered, don’t wait — space fills up fast, and we’d love to have you be a part of the conversation.
The April release of Creative License: The Law and Culture of Digital Sampling marked the collaborative effort between the book’s authors and the team at Future of Music Coalition. Co-authored by Kembrew McLeod and FMC board member Peter DiCola, with contributions from Jenny Toomey and Kristin Thomson of FMC, Creative License is a significant contribution to the debate surrounding the law of digital sampling. read more
Back in 2005, I watched Public Enemy producer Hank Shocklee and funk godfather George Clinton debate this issue at a conference in D.C. Shocklee played increasingly short snippets of a song and wondered how much he should pay for the right to use each sample, as commercial hip-hop artists routinely do. Eventually, only a fraction of a note was left. “Am I stealing your performance… or am I just looking for the sound?”
Calling all upstate New Yorkers. Our friends at Public Knowledge — a Washington, D.C.-based that focuses on the intersections between copyright law and the Internet — is sponsoring a free tutorial for musicians on copyright law. read more
We just wrapped up our events at The Public Theater in New York on October 6, both of which went extremely well. It was a long day for staff, what with our What’s the Future for Musicians? seminar and Creative License panel discussion taking place essentially back-to-back (with an awesome cocktail party in between). Still, it was a blast, and attendees were excited about the range of information offered in both the presentations and breakout sessions. read more
Washington, DC â€“ Future of Music Coalition announces panelist and programming details for its upcoming musician education events: “What’s the Future for Musicians” in Chicago on September 22; “What’s the Future for Musicians” in New York City on October 6 ; and “Creative License”, a panel discussion about sampling and fair use, also in NYC on October 6. read more
We all know Greg Gillis’s invocation of the fair use principle in justifying the use of samples in Girl Talk’s Feed The Animals is dubious at best.
In an exorbitantly detailed, carefully argued blog post, The Future of Music Coalition has broken down the legal precedents of sampling in relation to Girl Talk. The post argues that though Feed The Animals is difficult to justify legally, it would be virtually impossible to produce through means sanctioned by law: