About Production Music

Production music (also known as library music) is specifically written for synchronisation or dubbing in audio and audiovisual productions. They include TV, radio adverts, feature films, websites and even viral marketing campaigns.

The licensing of Mechanical Copyright Protection Society (MCPS) rights is handled by PRS for Music.

MCPS offers quality production music written by professional songwriters and composers. Our simple and cost-effective production music licences offer pre-clearance for any type of usage, access to a huge library of tracks and an easy online purchasing process.

Television or radio broadcast

You will need a licence if you are a television or radio broadcaster and are going to broadcast MCPS production music on your channel.

Our broadcast team can arrange the correct licences, covering both the making and broadcasting of programmes. Please contact them directly:

Programming rates for independent production companies

View our TV programming rates for independent production companies (IPC)

There are many advantages of using production music, including:

  • Production music is simple, quick and cost-effective
  • Libraries supply recording copies for use in all productions
  • Production music is available in a variety of moods and lengths
  • All our music is cleared so no further copyright permissions are required
  • Use our quick and simple online licence application form
  • Read our production music rate card to help you budget accurately

No, MCPS administers the licensing process on behalf of our library members. You will need to contact the libraries directly to access their music.

Search our list of MCPS library members with contact details and website links.

A PRS for Music licence is required whenever a piece of music is performed or played in any public space or place outside of the home. This includes: music on hold, background to web/WAP page, streamed programming or webcasting, permanent download, podcasts as well as ‘all media’ uses*.

The only music licence you require for all other production music uses is the MCPS rate card licence. This covers the right to reproduce the musical work, sound recording and artist performance, ie. all of the rights normally required by a production company.

*An ‘all media’ use only requires a PRS for Music licence if this includes an element of communication to the public.

Services making a licensed production available online or via mobile networks will need to have an appropriate PRS for Music licence covering the performing right.

The performing right is the communication to the public of a production’s musical work whenever it is streamed or downloaded.

Please call our Online Licensing team on +44 (0)20 3741 4500 or visit the Online section for more information on PRS for Music's online and mobile licences.

No, the rate card only covers production music use. Please contact MCPS Licensing on +44 (0)20 3741 3888 to find out about accessing commercial tracks.

Do I need prior approval to use production music in adverts or other contentious areas?

No, once you have registered as a production music user there are no pre-clearance formalities involved as long as the correct licences are in place.

No, in the UK MCPS exclusively administers all licensing requirements on behalf of our library members. This means that it is easy to use tracks from various libraries in your productions while still purchasing the licence from a central source.
Please contact MCPS Licensing on +44 (0)20 3741 3888. They can also help if you are adding new territories or more copies to your existing licence where you need a ‘top up’ licence.

Please contact MCPS Credit Control on +44 (0)20 3741 3888 or mcpscreditcontrol@mcps.co.uk

Please note, payment of your invoice signals your acceptance of the terms and conditions and once payment has been made it will not be possible to refund you. For this reason, please ensure that you check the details on your invoice thoroughly and inform us prior to payment of the invoice should you wish to either amend or cancel your order.

It is important to consider the rights in the musical work and the sound recording when using music in your productions. The table below shows the different rights administered by the main UK copyright societies.

Commercial music

Rights required: To copy To communicate to the public
The musical work MCPS PRS for Music
The sound recording PPL/VPL or
record company
PPL

Production music

Rights required: To copy To communicate to the public
The musical work MCPS PRS for Music
The sound recording MCPS MCPS