The music industry is finally seeing some daylight after years of sales declines and revenue attrition. As industry organizations announce year-on-year growth, songwriters are turning to royalty management organizations like SongTrust in increasing numbers. In just under a year SongTrust added 50,000 songwriters, 5,000 publishers, and now represents 1 million copyrights. The company said that one-in-five new professional songwriters are using SongTrust’s platform.
Signs of the music industry’s comeback are everywhere, SongTrust noted. They’re visible in the 8.1 percent increase in global recorded music revenues; in the second straight year that the German publishing rights body, GEMA, topped 1 billion Euros in revenue; and in the record financial results recorded by the PRS for Music — an increase of 14.7 percent over 2016.
More good news is coming to songwriters and rights holders in the form of the Music Modernization Act that’s now making its way through Congress.
Technology is something that the music industry’s back end has sorely needed. Performers, producers and songwriters avail themselves of the latest technologies in the studios and stages around the world and are then reduced to Excel spreadsheets and outmoded tracking systems to follow their songs through various distribution channels. And digital technologies like sampling, and distribution platforms like Spotify and others have complicated the process even further.
There’s a whole range of tools that are coming to market to help professionalize the back end of the industry, so that artists can get paid their fair share.
Songtrust was born out of Downtown Music Publishing, a publishing and rights management firm that manages rights for artists, such as Frank Sinatra, One Direction and Santigold.