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Topic: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

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  1. #1

    OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    I've recently finished my first couple of projects that could possibly generate some performance royalties, so I'm trying to understand the whole cue sheet/PRO submission process. Can someone clarify for me who is responsible for submitting cue sheets to the PRO? The composer or the production company, or does it matter? The producer I'm dealing seems to be pretty clueless with this stuff. If some of the more experienced composers out there can give me some more insight on how this process works, I'd really appreciate it.

  2. #2

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    From my experiece the production company usually does. Though I suspect that some of the production companies I've worked for didn't know that so I'm now going to submit some myself. Though I don't know if this is legal. I'll call tomorrow to find out.

    Cheers,

    Jose

  3. #3

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    Quote Originally Posted by josejherring
    From my experiece the production company usually does. Though I suspect that some of the production companies I've worked for didn't know that so I'm now going to submit some myself. Though I don't know if this is legal. I'll call tomorrow to find out.

    Cheers,

    Jose
    AFAIK it is the responsibility of the music publisher to submit the cue sheet. In effect it gives an automatic licence for the music to be used. If you are the publisher then it is your responsibility.

    Daryl

  4. #4

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Daryl
    AFAIK it is the responsibility of the music publisher to submit the cue sheet. In effect it gives an automatic licence for the music to be used. If you are the publisher then it is your responsibility.

    Daryl
    Thanks Daryl. I've got some work to do now.

    Jose

  5. #5

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    Here's the real deal. Unless you are doing work for a network (or cable channel) or an established movie studio (Lion's Gate, Miramax), the chances of the producers knowing what to do with your cue sheets are slim to none. Usually if they sell the show to a network, the network should ask them for the cue sheets....but this simply does not happen. I have had several shows on Nick and PBS which did not report my cue sheets because they never asked for them and they were never provided to them.

    What you need to do is contact your PRO, inform them that you have reason to believe that the show that you worked on, is airing and there is a strong chance that the Cue Sheets have not been turned in by the production company. You will then be required to send in your cue sheets, they will check against their database and should then add them to their records.

    Remember, nobody gives a crap whether or not you collect your royalties except for yourself. It is in your own interest to take matters into your own hands because if you're expecting others to do it, chances are it won't happen!
    >>Kays
    http://www.musicbykays.com
    Music Composition for Feature Films, Television and Interactive Entertainment

  6. #6

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    Quote Originally Posted by midphase
    Here's the real deal. Unless you are doing work for a network (or cable channel) or an established movie studio (Lion's Gate, Miramax), the chances of the producers knowing what to do with your cue sheets are slim to none. Usually if they sell the show to a network, the network should ask them for the cue sheets....but this simply does not happen. I have had several shows on Nick and PBS which did not report my cue sheets because they never asked for them and they were never provided to them.

    What you need to do is contact your PRO, inform them that you have reason to believe that the show that you worked on, is airing and there is a strong chance that the Cue Sheets have not been turned in by the production company. You will then be required to send in your cue sheets, they will check against their database and should then add them to their records.

    Remember, nobody gives a crap whether or not you collect your royalties except for yourself. It is in your own interest to take matters into your own hands because if you're expecting others to do it, chances are it won't happen!
    You are quite right. Even with established companies it is as well to check that the cue sheet has been dealt with properly. If the company is also the publisher they have an incentive to do it properly (ie royalties), but if not they can be very slack. In the past I have done exactly what Midphase suggests and contacted PRS myself to make sure that things were done properly.

    On a related note do be aware the (in the UK) at least, TV stations don't necessarily give a complete playlist of all the music used in a program and PRS only checks up a small sample anyway, so it is worth putting the legwork in if you hear some of your music being played; don't assume that the publishers know about it.

    Daryl

  7. #7

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    ...on a related note...do you guys ask for a copy of the cue sheet routinely to be forwarded to you from the production company? I don't, but often wonder what gets handed in and how accurate it was.

    I scored a show in 96 that got heavy airplay, but the production company never submitted a cue sheet before going out of business. Years later, I finally submitted my own (to ASCAP). The delay cost me thousands of dollars of income.....but at least I'm getting a bit from it now. So it is indeed important to take responsibility for this aspect of ones work and make sure cues are properly reported.

    FYI you can find out from your PRO what form the cue sheet should take and exactly what info included.

    Rob

  8. #8

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    Quote Originally Posted by rob morsberger
    ...on a related note...do you guys ask for a copy of the cue sheet routinely to be forwarded to you from the production company? I don't, but often wonder what gets handed in and how accurate it was.

    I scored a show in 96 that got heavy airplay, but the production company never submitted a cue sheet before going out of business. Years later, I finally submitted my own (to ASCAP). The delay cost me thousands of dollars of income.....but at least I'm getting a bit from it now. So it is indeed important to take responsibility for this aspect of ones work and make sure cues are properly reported.

    FYI you can find out from your PRO what form the cue sheet should take and exactly what info included.

    Rob
    If memory serves me correctly I think that I (and composers that I have orchestrated for) have always "volunteered" to do the cue sheet ourselves, as it is important to get not just the length and number of cues right but also whether the cue is background or featured.

    Daryl

  9. #9

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    Awesome information everyone. What is the strict definition of background vs. feature music? Is it simply a question of whether or not there is any dialog?

  10. #10

    Re: OT: Newbie Cue Sheet Question

    Glen,

    Quote Originally Posted by glennm01
    Awesome information everyone. What is the strict definition of background vs. feature music? Is it simply a question of whether or not there is any dialog?
    I'm in the same boat with you as I've just had some music played on a cable network. I was talking with the music supervisor of this show about background or featured, because I had one cue for a docudrama in which the character on screen says nothing, but there's 2 lines of dialogue from a character offscreen. I was wathcin' the show and told the music supervisor to pat the editor on the back for, IMO, featuring the music. He told me, 'I had to fight to have the music listed as featured and not background.'
    So I'm not sure if it's a PRO thing or it's a cable network definition thing.

    Sincerely,

    Jonathan

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