Production Music guide

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What is production music?

Production music (or library music) is music specifically written for inclusion in audio and audio-visual productions (advertisements, video productions and film).

Why use production music?

It is a convenient and cost-effective way of obtaining high quality music for synchronisation and dubbing into productions.

What is the process for using production music?

Getting started

Before applying online for the production music licence, there are a few important steps you must consider... 

Contacting libraries

MCPS does not supply library music to you directly, but can provide a list of up to date and comprehensive contact information of all our Library members.

Accessing the music

When contacting Libraries you will be able to choose whether to discuss your music requirements with one of their consultants before receiving music on CDs or to use their online music search facilities where available.

Be prepared

Applying for your production music licence online is very straightforward, however, there are a few details we require in order for you to complete your application... 

Music details

Make sure that you keep a record of:

  • The catalogue number of each disc to be used
  • The title of each music track to be used
  • The composer(s) and arranger(s) of each music track
  • The name of the Library (copyright owner) for each music track
  • The duration of each individual cue of music recorded 

Production details

Please ensure that you make notes of all of the production details as you go, especially:

  • Production title
  • The client’s details (e.g. Company name and contact details)
  • Any reference number(s)
  • The facility house used (if applicable) 

Licence details

It is also important to collect the information you will require to select the correct type of licence, for example:

  • Type of media (e.g. radio advert, television programme, online, etc)
  • Licence category required (all of which are listed on the MCPS Rate Card)
  • Additional details (e.g. territory(s) or broadcast area, number of copies, etc) 


Keeping clear and accurate records as suggested above is especially important if you are working on a number of different productions at the same time.

Each cue must be recorded on the application system individually. Where certain tariffs allow for the aggregation of cues, the system will calculate the cost of the licence accordingly.

Other important information relating to specific licence areas:


For the production of a series of adverts that only vary in the ‘end line’ (tag ending) and/or have shorter versions of a full length commercial (cut downs),  see our ‘per track' rates. Campaign rates are not published but can be negotiated, please contact MCPS licensing for details (see the MCPS Rate Card).

Television programming

Per-programme rates are capped when ten x 'per 30 second' cues are used. Aggregation is also applied to the use of the same track within a production.

Online productions

If in doubt about the type of licence required, please review our rate card guide to online content.

Make an online application

When you have completed the first two stages, you can make your online application.

Apply for your licence as soon as the final version of your production is completed.

Select the usage detail, then check all your durations are correct and enter these individually (where aggregation is permitted the rates will be calculated automatically).

Input the production and music details you have collected.

Checking your licence details

Once completed, you will be presented with the details of your licence to review.

If you need to, you can make final amendments at this stage.

There is an opportunity to provide, alternative licensee details should you be applying on behalf of a client.


Once you are happy with everything, press the button to submit your completed licence application

Your licence application number, will appear on your dashboard where you can also access a copy of the invoice. You can also access copies of your licence here once the invoice has been paid. You can now choose to pay for your licence at the point of application.

What happens next

Receive e-mail confirmation

An email will be sent to you confirming the details of the licence you have applied for, which will include a copy of your invoice, this email should arrive the same day you submit the application. If you chose to pay at the point of application, you will receive a separate email containing your licence. If you choose to pay later, an email with your licence will be sent to you once payment has been received.

Receive licence documentation

If you choose to pay later, the invoice amount requires payment in full within 21 days of the date on the invoice.


Please ensure that the appropriate licences have been secured for the use of production music.  MCPS reserves the right to request samples of any productions made and to make verification visits to ensure that our members' repertoire is being correctly licensed.

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