Blog Archives

The Future of the Music Business

In December, Hal Leonard Books will release the fourth edition of The Future of the Music Business by Steve Gordon, an invaluable guide on how to succeed in the ever-changing music industry. Here’s a look at what’s new in the fourth edition.

The Future of the Music Business

4th Edition

Similar to prior editions, the purpose of the fourth edition of the FUTURE OF THE MUSIC BUSINESS, which is scheduled to be published in December 2014, is to provide a roadmap for success in the music business – not only for musicians, songwriters and producers – but also for entrepreneurs and industry professionals. Technology has profoundly changed the recording industry and the music publishing business.  Entirely new rules, business practices and  models have emerged at breathtaking speed including in the several years since the publication of the third edition in 2008. The fourth edition explains the most recent rules,  business practices and models, and offers insights into how to take advantage of them.

Part I provides an overview of the basic rules and business practices that apply to the record and music publishing business today. We discuss how copyright law protects  songs and recordings, standard contracts including management, label and producer deals and the most recent rules and business practices that apply to the new means of distributing music, that is, downloading, streaming and webcasting, and how those rules differ in foreign countries.

Part II is intended for producers of audiovisual works such as films, documentaries, and television. This section includes information on audio-only projects such as compilations and music sampling, special projects such as musical theatre and fashion shows, and stand-alone digital projects such as web series and digital sheet music. The emphasis is on how producers seeking music for their projects can save money.

Part III offers a history of the recording industry’s struggle to come to grips with the digital era,  analyzes the current state of music piracy, explores various current  controversies, and provides some hope for the recovery of the record business.

Part IV provides a “how to” in the digital age on topics ranging from ranging from how to write hit songs in the digital era to using digital tools such as YouTube to succeed to how to use a music education to succeed as a creator or music business professional.

DVD and two free CLE credits: Attorneys will be able to obtain two free CLE credits by viewing the DVD included in the 4th edition. The DVD contains a conversation between myself and Bob Clarida, a leading copyright litigation lawyer and adjunct professor at Columbia Law School, about Robin Thicke’s copyright infringement case involving his monster hit “Blurred Lines” and Gaye’s song “Got to Give It Up.”

Power Tips for Logic Pro Users

Dot Bustelo is the author of the Hal Leonard’s Quick Guide books, The Power in Logic Pro and Logic Pro for Recording Engineers and Producers. Below, you’ll find excerpts from the DVDs that come with the books, useful information for Logic Pro users.


More free Power Tips on Logic Pro from Dot Bustelo:

Modifying Key Commands

Beat Mapping

Channel Strip Settings



Find more videos like this on our MusicPro Guides YouTube Channel.

The Power in Logic Pro and Logic Pro for Recording Engineers and Producers are books in Hal Leonard’s QUICK PRO GUIDES series, tutorials for various DAWS products written by experts.


Interview with author Jake Perrine

Hal Leonard has started a new video series of author video chats with MusicPro Guides and Quick Pro Guides authors, which you can view at MusicPro Guide’s YouTube channel. Today, we launch the first two with Jake Perrine, the author of Quick Pro Guides books Producing Music with Ableton Live and Sound Design, Mixing, and Mastering with Ableton Live. Here, he is interviewed by Bill Gibson, Hal Leonard editor and author.

Producing Music with Ableton Live

Learn to make electronic dance music with the innovative application that started – and is still leading – the revolution! Start producing your own music from the ground up! Ableton Live is a groundbreaking program whose unique nonlinear, incredibly flexible features set it far apart from all the other digital audio applications. It is equally at home with making beats, remixing, live recording, DJing, live looping, sound design, electronic music, hip-hop, and much more.

Sound Design, Mixing, and Mastering with Ableton Live

Go beyond the basics of Ableton Live with this book of audio making and mangling recipes, tips, and mixing/mastering techniques. Ableton Live is undoubtedly the most flexible audio application available today: Use it for sound design for music, film, theater, and games; composition; improvising with other musicians; live looping; DJing; and of course mixing and mastering music. Author, mastering engineer, certified Ableton trainer, and power-user Jake Perrine will inspire you to use Live in new ways, and to improve how you already use it. Striking a delicate balance of artistry and theory, he will expand your repertoire for both the studio and the stage.

Big Copyright Extensions: They Still Don’t Trickle Down…

It’s starting to look obvious: sweeping, long-term copyright extensions simply benefit major labels and rich artists, and few others. And that still seems to be the case for soon-to-be-implemented copyright extensions on recordings in Europe, despite some nods to smaller musicians.

The quick catch-up: Instead of 50 years, this latest legislation extends it to 70, which saves a trove of valuable 60s masters from entering the public domain.  Predictably, big labels and richer-than-God artists were lobbying for this one, with rhetoric and sweeteners tossed towards the struggling musician.  But the broader benefit for those artists – and society in general – remains low.

In fact, heading into the vote, 8 European countries were seriously questioning the extension resolution.  The nays weren’t enough to curb passage in the EU Council in Brussels, though struggling artists were getting out-voted.  “Extending the term of protection will however not primarily be of benefit to this group,” Sweden declared.

And, Belgium itself was among the dissenters.  The others casting doubts included the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Sweden, with Estonia and Austria abstaining.

Keep reading on Digital Music News.


New technologies are revolutionizing the music business. While these changes may be smashing traditional business models and creating havoc among the major record companies, they are also providing new opportunities for unsigned artists, independent labels, and music business entrepreneurs.

The Future of the Music Business provides a legal and business road map for success in today’s music business by setting forth a comprehensive summary of the rules pertaining to the traditional music business, including music licensing, as well as the laws governing online distribution of music and video. Available for purchase here.

STEVE GORDON (New York, NY) operates a music clearance service and is an educator on entertainment and copyright law. The recipient of two Fulbright Scholarships, Gordon has taught at Tel Aviv University in Israel and Bocconi University in Milan, Italy, and has also served as adjunct professor at the New School in New York City. He has lectured at many schools and universities, including Juilliard, Wharton, and Columbia University.

YouTube Giveaway

Hal Leonard to give away $600 worth of books to YouTube subscribers

With almost 1.4 million upload views and 2,800 subscribers, Hal Leonard’s MusicPro Guides channel on YouTube has become an indispensible resource on the web for musicians, songwriters, music engineers, producers, and other music industry professionals. Named after Hal Leonard Books’ highly respected series MusicPro Guides, this YouTube channel brings together the most experienced and highly regarded authors to teach you everything you need to know about audio engineering, recording, software, songwriting, equipment, and more. These tutorials will help you see, hear, and easily understand the concepts, tools, and procedures you need to master.

Many music industry books from Hal Leonard Books include accompanying DVDs. The MusicPro Guides YouTube channel gives you free access to excerpts of DVDs, as well as web originals.

In celebration of the Audio Engineering Society conference this year, MusicPro Guides will be hosting a giveaway on YouTube. All new subscribers between October 18th and October 26th 2011 will be entered into the drawing. Previous subscribers can enter by making comments on two videos between those dates. Winners will be announced in a video following the end date. Prizes include bundles of books such as a producer pack, an engineer pack, and a music business pack. Winners will receive four books of their choice (up to a $200 value per winner).

EarDaddy Video Site Set for January 2012 Launch

Subscription video site will offer exclusive training in Audio, Music, and Sound

Hal Leonard Corporation and BCI Media, LLC, are joining forces to create EarDaddy, a subscription video training site aimed directly at the audio, video, and music communities.  EarDaddy will offer hundreds of professional video training programs on topics ranging from Music Business, Songwriting, and Instrument Training to Studio Production, Acoustics, and Sound Reinforcement, along with many others.

“EarDaddy will fill an online void for a comprehensive, one-stop, reasonably priced video training platform for audio, music, and sound,” says John Cerullo, Group Publisher of Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group.

Although there are currently several online sites providing pay-as-you-go training for the latest music technology titles, purchasers of MIDI and audio software may also be performers, musicians, DJs, songwriters, producers, studio owners, engineers, or teachers. Each of these areas offers opportunities for video training.

“You may come to EarDaddy to learn how to use the latest DAW software, but you’ll come back when you see the variety of training that extends to all of the other interests you may have in the areas of audio, music, and sound,” says EarDaddy founder, Brad Smiley, owner of BCI Media.

EarDaddy will offer 24/7 accessibility to the site’s content through a low monthly or yearly subscription fee.

For more information about EarDaddy, visit the Hal Leonard booth (#364) at the Audio Engineering Society Convention at the Javits Center in New York, Oct. 21-23.