Why We’re Needed

The contributions of jazz composers have too long been undervalued by the publishing and recording companies.

The jazz publishers’ role in the music industry should comprise exploiting the music in their catalogues by interesting artists in recording it and by making the music available in a variety of printed and virtual formats in order for it to reach a wider listening audience.

However, these are the facts on the ground . . .

Currently, many jazz publishing companies are offshoots (read: neglected orphans) of major recording companies. Record companies are, of course, interested in developing and promoting recordings and artists, not in the exploitation of music. Therefore, these so-called “publishing companies” have often turned into “holding companies.” Through long experience with our clients, we have confirmed that the primary function of many of these companies is, simply, to “hold on to all of the money.”

The result of this “holding company” approach to publishing is that the creators of the music are treated neither responsibly nor with the respect that they deserve. The Jazz Composers Service fights to regain that respect for its clients and insists upon their being paid what is owed them. Publishing companies are frequently purchased, or reorganized, names are changed, and it is often difficult for an individual composer to track down these firms and more difficult for them to determine who owes them money, let alone collect it.

We Ask . . . if you are a composer, do you know who holds the publishing rights to your music? Are you certain there are no recordings or other publications in existence for which you should be receiving money? If you are a performing artist, are you sure you have received all of your artist’s royalties?

(Read on to find out what we can and will do for you . . . .)

(Photo above: Chet Baker & a young Dean Pratt.)