A common way of getting your music licensed is to go through intermediaries. These are organizations that work closely with creatives, companies and whomever else needs music to license. Below is a list of licensing companies that Musformation knows to be reputable. If you are looking to license your cover songs, we highly recommend Affordable Song Licensing.
Pump Audio (pumpaudio.com) is a division of Getty Images, one the biggest names in image licensing. One of the benefits of listing with Pump Audio is that you get pushed to Getty Image’s large clientele. The down side is their rates aren’t very musician friendly. They feature the following:
- No submission fee.
- More than 100,000 placements.
- Musicians get 35 percent of earnings.
- Non-exclusive, so you can use other sites/services to license your music.
Rumblefish (rumblefish.com) does just about everything a licensing company can do, but is most famous for getting your music inside retail store playlists through its unique sonic branding. They do strong placements for soundtracks in stores and other branded experiences for consumers. The feature the following:
- No submission fee.
- You receive 50 percent of net licensing fees.
They run Friendly Music, which licenses music for YouTube videos so that YouTube and low-budget video directors can get high-quality music. They also partnered with Shutterstock to license music to video creators.
A marketplace for licensing that connects musicians directly with people looking to license music. YouLicense takes a fee off the transaction, and you do the rest of the negotiations. All of their deals are non-exclusive. (youlicense.com)
Music Xray (musicxray.com) is a website where you can submit your music to a wide variety of opportunities. They facilitate licenses and marketing opportunities for brands including MTV and NBC.
Ricall (ricall.com) boasts much of indie rock’s royalty; as well as old-school chart hits from the ‘50s and modern-day pop hits. Ricall is much harder to get involved with, but its is reputable and has huge numbers for revenue and songs licensed.
Beatpick (beatpick.com) takes your music to all forms of media. You can easily submit your music to their website. Beatpick’s terms vary according to different agreements with each act.
This is a marketplace where you can get hired to create original music for companies. (audiodraft.com)
Submit your songs for more than 100 music-licensing opportunities per day. (broadjam.com)
A background music curator. Prescriptive (prescriptivemusic.com) uses music to set vibes for restaurants, hotels and other high-end establishments.
Although this is a popular site for stock photos, you can get licensing opportunities when company clients look for audio to accompany the website’s images. iStock Photo also draws heavily from Pump Audio’s catalog. (istockphoto.com/audio.php)
Sonicbids (sonicbids.com) has tons of licensing opportunities for musicians. For those on a cramped budget, please be aware there are fees associated with maintaining a profile on the website.
TAXI (TAXI.com) is a member service, with fees, that can help songwriters get licensing opportunities.
Jamendo (pro.jamendo.com) is a popular website for free music downloads. Its professional package offers artists a way to upload their music for licensing opportunities. Based in Luxembourg, this is a great way to open up European licensing opportunities for your music.
If you have a big catalog of music that you’re regularly pursuing licensing opportunities for, you may want to look at LicenseQuote as a solution to go directly to your buyers, rather than sending them to massive catalogs where they may find other choices. LicenseQuote gives you your own licensing storefront in order to facilitate licensing sales direct from your own website. (licensequote.com)
Magnatune is a licensing company for independent artists. The company claims to have a high standard for whom it selects to present to their clients. Magnatune deals in a wide variety of music and offers its clients previews by browsing through their subscription-based music catalog. (magnatune.com)
Audiosocket (audiosocket.com) states stock music is crap. The company offers real songs from real artists. Audiosocket deals with a handful of artists trying to find them great licensing opportunities. The company also is a curator of the Vimeo Music Store which, aside from the Free Music Archive (freemusicarchive.org), is the only way to get your music on to the service.
Music Dealers offer a huge catalog of music and a non-exclusive agreement which enables you to get inside its extensive catalog and increase your chances for placements. The company offers both sync and gaming license opportunities. (musicdealers.com)
Licensing company exclusively for classical music. (naxoslicensing.com)
Sentric Music looks for sync and gaming placements for independent artists. They’re a U.K.-based company that handles opportunities for both sync and games. (sentricmusic.com)
U.K.-based licensing company that’s been bringing placements for 30 years. (soundlounge.co.uk)
A marketplace for licensing opportunities. Gives a 50 percent share with a non-exclusive agreement. (yookamusic.com)
The following are music licensing services that accept unsolicited music, that we haven’t had the chance to extensively review:
- 1000 Tracks (com)
- 300 Monks (com)
- A&G Sync (com)
- Affix Music (com)
- Agoraphone (com)
- Aperture Music (com)
- Audiomachine (com)
- AudioMicro (com)
- Beatclock (com)
- Black Toast Music (com)
- BossHouse Music (com)
- Brand X Music (net)
- Bright Mind Music (com)
- Crucial Music (com)
- d2 Music (com)
- Jingle Punks Music (com)
- Magnatune (com)
- Mainstream Source (com)
- MusicSupervisor (us)
- Nightingale Music Productions (com)
- Princess Blue (com)
- RipTide Music (com)
- Transition Music (com)
MusikPitch Is A Songwriters Marketplace For Songwriting On Demand
For those of you who pride yourself on your ability to write a song for any occasion, MusikPitch (musikpitch.com) may have just opened up a wonderful world for you. Buyers post what they need from a song on the website, whether they want a tune for a commercial, film, TV or video game. MusikPitch provide songwriters with feedback and the winner gets paid in the end. This website is a great opportunity for songwriters to get noticed and make some extra cash!
On Bigger Licensing Deals
One of the most sought-after deals is to be represented by a big licensing company like Bank Robber Music or Ocean Park Music Group. Most of these deals are made by having the right team on your side and being associated one of the label, management or legal teams these licensing companies work with. Instead of soliciting to a big licensing company with your music, work hard on attracting a great team to your music. It will be much easier to get in their door.
There are many smaller licensing firms who will make small, non-exclusive deals with you and submit you for placements with music supervisors. Many of these contracts are easy to negotiate and very standard. These smaller licensing companies can often be the start to a relationship that will take you to a larger music licensing deal and more placements. Don’t be close-minded to smaller licensing deals. They can be the first step to bigger things.