11 February 2013
PRS for Music today announced ‘Amplify’, a new initiative bringing together electronic music writers, producers, publishers and labels to make the most of today’s changing technology and to ensure that writers and producers are benefiting fully from their tracks.
PRS for Music represents over 95,000 songwriters and publishers and collects £630m annually in royalties. With electronic music currently achieving worldwide success, many writers and producers are not receiving royalties at the levels they should.
PRS for Music analysis revealed:
- While electronic music programming made up 15% of broadcast hours on BBC Radio 1 in 2011 – paying royalties to writers for over 50% of these songs has been impossible due to incomplete track information reported to PRS for Music or writers simply not knowing they can become a member of the organisation and register their songs.
- DJs are less likely to submit set lists than their guitar-playing counterparts. Only 35% of set lists were completed at Creamfields and 15% at Glade in 2011. By comparison, at Reading Festival, a predominantly guitar-based event, 90% of set lists were completed.
- An average set list for a major electronic music festival such as Glade or Creamfields (approx 171 sets) can be worth £250 per set. This means a potential £85,500 is not being paid to the correct writers from these two events alone.
- Total industry online revenues grew by 20% in 2011 to reach £379m. Without adopting the right habits and using the right data, the electronic music community will not be able to earn the royalties they are due from their work.
Mark Lawrence, Director of Membership & Rights at PRS for Music said: “I was converted to dance music in 1989 when I walked into the Zap Club in Brighton and was hit by the sound of Voodoo Ray by A Guy called Gerald. This is a vital community, making a significant contribution to all creative industries. Its sound features heavily in television, advertising and film, alongside a long established but fast growing live sector. It is essential electronic music writers, producers and publishers are properly supported by joining PRS for Music, registering their songs and earning from their music.”
Highlights of the initiative include:
- Creating an electronic music committee which includes industry figures such as John Truelove (Truelove Music & producer ‘You Got the Love’), Anglo Management, Hospital Records, Defected Records, Reverb Music and AIM (the Association of Independent Music).
- Working with DJ technology specialists to find ways to report set lists automatically from clubs, radio and live performances.
- Working more closely with music rights societies around the world to ensure royalties are being efficiently collected and distributed.
- Raising awareness amongst emerging electronic music writers so they join PRS for Music and can start earning from their tracks.
The launch of ‘Amplify’ comes within two weeks of the launch of the Association for Electronic Music, a non-profit body advocating the value of the genre. Its co-founder Ben Turner states: "Issues around the payment of producers and artists have been a major factor in our thinking of the need for AFEM to exist, and we've had some valuable dialogue with PRS for Music on many issues around the genre. We welcome this initiative as a major part of a collective push from the electronic world to educate the genre and to get people paid and recognised for their work. We look forward to further discussions and building a strategy with those involved in the ‘Amplify’ initiative."
Other support from the electronic music community includes:
“It is great that PRS for Music recognises that electronic music writers should be paid for their work - just like everyone else. I am looking forward to seeing more getting the credit they deserve.” Mark Knight of Toolroom Records
“PRS for Music and the royalties they collect for us are an important part of Ninja Tune/Big Dada and Just Isn't Music's business and essential for all the artists and writers on our roster. With their ever growing profile, continued campaigning and assistance we can work together ensure that the people who create the music get paid!” Ninja Tune / Just Isn’t Music
"I've been writing music for people to dance to (and listen to) since 1986, and I will never forget my first PRS for Music pay cheque, it meant the world to me as a writer. PRS for Music are there to look after our interests, so it's important to join. Four times a year, a varying amount of money comes into my account. You can't always bank on how much you’ll get, but sometimes you might look at your statement to find that a TV show in Sweden used one of your b-sides as a theme for a game show - and earned you a few thousand in the process. Its fun seeing what's been happening to your music, and which countries are playing your tracks. Get on it." London Elektricity
"PRS for Music is a vital part of any songwriter's career, regardless of genre or stature, and is an integral part of our daily business as a publisher. Dance music producers, like any songwriter, can earn publishing income through a wide range of different sources and PRS for Music, in conjunction with a good publisher, will help songwriters understand and earn money from these increasingly important revenue streams." Ash Howard, Songs In The Key Of Knife Publishing / Hospital Records
“On TV, radio, at clubs and festivals: electronic music is a way of life. It is great that PRS for Music recognises that writers should be paid for their work - just like everyone else. More dance music producers and writers should be getting the credit they deserve.” Graeme Park
“I would not have been able to do what I love for twenty years without PRS for Music. They fully support music writers, making sure they get recognised and paid. I live and breathe dance music but it’s also my living, it’s such a great scene and growing all the time it’s important the right people reap the benefits.” Steve Mac
“It's fantastic to see the way PRS for Music are getting behind all the new technology and trying to make sure that with these advances writers of electronic music no matter how big or small should start to see some streams of income from royalties soon instead of it all going to the kings and queens of the pop world.” Timo Garcia
“Dance music writers and artists are far too under represented. You put in so much hard work, time and enthusiasm into completing what you think will be a successful dance track, only to find that unless it is released by a major, you will get very little come-back from it, because although it gets played all over the world by live DJ's the sets are never recorded properly. I am really excited to hear about PRS for Music’s electronic music project because they genuinely care about the writer and this is great move towards recognising that hard work.” Susie Ledge
Notes to Editors