Hi! Thanks for the question.
Please take note of the important disclaimer below that Google Answers
only provides general information and isn?t a substitute for informed
professional legal advice. So I still dvice you to seek professional
The arena of music licensing is kind of grey area right now but there
seems to be some of form of basic necessities that you could go by
depending on your needs. Please take note as well that based on my
readings, there are instances that for some music companies, there are
slight differences. But here are the general principles:
Since you are only using the music on DVD, the only license applicable
for you would be Synchronization or "Synch" Rights.
?A synchronization or "synch" right involves the use of a recording of
musical work in audio-visual form: for example as part of a motion
picture, television program, commercial announcement, music video or
other videotape. Often, the music is "synchronized" or recorded in
timed relation with the visual images. Synchronization rights are
licensed by the music publisher to the producer of the movie or
?COMMON MUSIC LICENSING TERMS?
The numbers as to costs vary widely depending on the artist or on the
one doing the research. But these resources can give you a pretty good
This data is from a 2003 article so costs might have gone up even
more. Still the article pretty much gives us a good picture on what
costs to expect.
??networks such as HBO routinely pay per-use licensing fees of
anywhere from $5,000 to $100,000 to feature prestigious musicians in
their original programming, and subsequently, their video releases.?
(Note that this is only for TV use. We cited this to get a good
picture on how much for synchronization rights later on.)
?Add in miscellaneous costs (such as $70 per hour to have an expert
run a copyright search on a song); expenses arising from where a song
is placed (using it over the credits costs about five times as much as
putting it in the background of a scene); and the right to use the
song in a permanent medium like DVD instead of in a single broadcast
(three times the cost)? (So DVD music rights costs can go by $70 + 3 x
(5,000 to $100,000)!)
?May I see your license, please??
In this more recent 2005 article here are some figures to take note.
?Fees for song usage range from $1,500-$15,000, with superstar tracks
reaching up to $20,000-$25,000. That amount usually includes master
rights for broadcast and most other media rights, with a time frame
ranging from three years to perpetuity. An additional home video fee
is equal to or greater than those quoted. Synchronization rights are
negotiated separately, with master and sync rights usually split
50/50, unless the song is a cover -- a situation that favors the
?The song doesn't remain the same?
Search terms used:
Costs of "Synchronization rights" dvd
I hope this would help you in your research. Before rating this
answer, please ask for a clarification if you have a question or if
you would need further information.
Google Answers Researcher
Clarification of Answer by
11 Jul 2006 03:20 PDT
A mechanical license in your situation seems to be inappropriate but
just as tr1234-ga mentioned, you might need to have Master Use
License. I think tr1234-ga has some good basis and thanks for the
"This can also be used when a film company wants to use the master in
a film also obtaining a synchronization license to use the song."
Please read the following page as well. This link supports the notion
that Master Use License and Synch License is what you will need.
"HOW TO ACQUIRE MUSIC FOR FILMS"
As for the fees, again it varies greatly.
"Fees and advances for synch licenses vary greatly depending upon the
prospective use (e.g. whether the song will be used as a title song of
a movie or in a commercial), the prominence of use (background music
or featured performance), the popularity of the song and/or the
songwriter, the media in which the song is to be used (e.g.
television, motion pictures or even a video arcade game), the budget
of the potential licensee, and the amount of goods that are to be
initially manufactured, as well as other factors."
I hope this would be of help to you.