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stepback123
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Licensee Questions
« on: Nov 22nd, 2006, 11:30am »
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I've searched the boards and found a plethora of great info, but could not find answers to some questions. I wasn't 100% if this post should be here or in the Trademark forum.
I am interested in being a licensee for LP (music) artwork. The artists I'm going after would be past there prime and not "hot" on todays market.
 
My questions are:
 
1. To license the artwork from any album does permission need to come from the record label, the artist (for using their likeness), and the artist or photographer (depending if the cover is a photo or illustration)?
 
2. Is there a wide range of licensing fees? I would assume there would be a larger fee for someone like James Taylor opposed to Debbie Gibson. Also if anyone has a rough estimate on licensing fees and if they can be used as an advancement against royalties (I'm worried about getting burned due to inexperience).  
 
3. Average royalty rate. I've read the average royalty is anywhere from 10-18% of the net. Is this correct?
 
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JSonnabend
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Re: Licensee Questions
« Reply #1 on: Nov 22nd, 2006, 1:57pm »
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Permission needs to come from whoever is holding sufficient rights to grant permission.  That may seem like a coy answer, but unfortunately, that's about the best anyone can answer in the abstract.  The label, recording artist or creator of the artwork each might have sufficient rights.  You'd have to investigate for each cover in question.
 
There is likely a range of licensing fees, but whether or not there's a "standard" range in this field I can't answer.
 
- Jeff
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SonnabendLaw
Intellectual Property and Technology Law
Brooklyn, USA
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JSonnabend@SonnabendLaw.com
stepback123
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Re: Licensee Questions
« Reply #2 on: Nov 27th, 2006, 10:07am »
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Thanks for the info Jeff. I understand this industry isn't always transparent.
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