Tuesday, August 20th, 2019

MPG’s Major Role Helping PPL draft Its ‘Eligible Studio Producer Form’

By editorJuly 20, 2012


London, UK: The Music Producers Guild is pleased to announce its support for PPL’s Eligible Studio Producers Form, which is designed to provide evidence of a studio producer’s performance at the time of recording.

Following intensive discussions with several industry organisations including MPG, PPL has devised a mechanism by which all parties can agree, at the point of recording, what contributions have been made on a track. The MPG believes this new form offers a practical solution for studio producers to make royalty claims by offering a simple and transparent process that will clarify future payments.

Steve Levine (photograph by Rosie Levine)

Steve Levine, Chairman of the MPG, says: “The MPG has been working very closely with PPL and members of the PPL Performer Board and PPL main Board, to formulate a method by which studio music producers can confidently and properly claim for their share of all the income streams deriving from the public performance of the sound recordings that they produce and contribute to.

“There have been recent examples of major artists querying the rights of the studio music producer to receive this equitable remuneration on previous, often legacy, sound recordings they worked on. These have been dealt with by PPL on a case-by-case basis, as very often there is little or no documentation, and the memory of events and the original sessions can change over time. This has resulted in substantial additional administration time and costs for PPL and in some cases lengthy and acrimonious disputes between producers, artists and their managers.

“This situation could not continue and I am really pleased that PPL has taken steps to clarify exactly how a studio music producer can qualify.”

The MPG’s determination to protect PPL income for all qualifying producers has been praised by other industry organisations.

Peter Filleul, former Executive Director of the Association of Professional Recording Services (APRS) and Chairman of the European Sound Directors’ Association says: “The MPG deserves credit for negotiating so tenaciously on this issue and for finally arriving at a workable solution that addresses many of our concerns, pleas and protests over many years.

“The new form at least acknowledges the possibility that some studio producers may make a contribution to a sound recording that is worthy of compensation for its performance. This development is evidence of a growing understanding of the value of the production role and should serve as valuable argument for change where ever a producers’ contribution goes unrecognised.”

PPL’s new form does not acknowledge an immediate right to payment because the law governing this right currently has no default position that would allow every producer to automatically qualify. However it does clarify the position for producers who do not perform on recordings (by playing or singing), yet do perform as a producer – a role more akin to that of a conductor.

“Where an Eligible Studio Producer claim is accepted by PPL, the studio producer is added as a non-featured performer on the relevant repertoire and is therefore entitled to a share of PPL payments.” Steve Levine adds. “This is a huge step forward for all producers and one that will help PPL reduce administration costs, which will mean more money is available for distribution to everyone, including artists.”

The system will be trialled for an initial period of one year and the MPG encourages feedback and suggestions for improvement. MPG members can participate by adding their comments at www.mpg.org.uk/blog_posts

For more information about the form, its benefits, how to access it and how to submit the completed form to PPL, go to www.ppluk.com/studioproducers – where you will also find a video giving the views of producers and artists. 

About Music Producers Guild (UK):

The Music Producers Guild (UK) is an independent and democratic organisation that encourages the highest standards of music production, and actively engages with other music industry organisations to campaign and lobby on matters of important mutual interest. 

The MPG represents and promotes the interests of all those involved in the production of recorded music, including producers, engineers, mixers, re-mixers, programmers and mastering engineers.

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