About Music Publishing

Courtesy of our Music Publishers Association (MPA)


Music Publishers make contracts with writers to publish their works either in perpetuity or, with most modern contracts, for a fixed term. ‘Publish’ means more than just organising and printing sheet music and scores. The role of a music publisher involves:


• Registering the works of writers with all appropriate collecting societies and agencies worldwide
• Monitoring and tracking the use of the music they own and ensuring that proper payment is made for all licensed uses
• Making royalty payments to writers in respect of the usage of their music
• Taking appropriate action against anyone using music without the necessary licence
• Finding new and talented writers and encouraging and supporting them as they develop their skills, whether through helping with their living expenses, providing them with the facilities they need to produce music or offering advice and guidance in writing for particular markets and audiences
• Securing commissions for new works and helping to coordinate work-flow
• Producing demo recordings and, in the case of contemporary classical music, performance materials (score and parts etc)
• Producing and licensing the production of printed music
• Producing promotional materials, including sampler CDs, study scores, brochures etc
• Promoting writers and their music to performers, broadcasters, record companies, film-makers, advertising agencies and others who use music on a commercial basis, both nationally and internationally
• Licensing the use of music, whether directly in the case of individual and special usages (eg synchronisation deals) or via the collecting society network
• Responding to new licensing opportunities that flow from technological developments


It is recommended that you attend the Asian Music Seminar 2013 in London to learn more