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Music Composition Essay

981 words - 4 pages

Since the beginning of time, two aspects of society have remained constant -- weapons and music. Every great society has created music and weapons of its own. In most circles, violence is seen as having a negative connotation due to the various losses experienced through war and other conflict. On the other hand, music is used to motivate, calm, and even remedy those who are suffering. Therefore, music is the one career option guaranteed to stay relevant and respected in society.
The road to becoming a respected music composer is a difficult one. In college, intensive study of aural skills, writing skills, reading comprehension, music theory, and fine arts history and ...view middle of the document...

Typically, a composer will earn $400 for every composition sold online. It can be expected that a composer will relocate to find employment (See Graph). Fortunately, careers in music are on a 14 percent national growth rate (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Success can be certainly be attained, but it requires dedication.
Legal Procedures
As with many occupations, the legal procedures involved with music composition can be easily overlooked. As it pertains to composition, copyrights, contracts, and service organizations are the most significant. Due to the nature of the profession, copyrights can be very difficult to obtain; however, the “poor-man’s copyright” may be a way around the expense of protecting one’s music (VLAA St. Louis). The method of procuring one of these copyrights is very straightforward. The composer must simply mail the music to himself. This way, the copyright is secured by having a third party date the document. This may not be the best way to win a court case against copyright infringers, but it often deters people from trying to steal a composer’s music (Riley). When dealing with contracts, the amount of capital earned per composition varies due to the difficulty of the piece, how many edits are required, and the amount of time allotted for completion. The fixed amount will be debated and established in a contract. At the end of the quarter, the publishing company will send a check to the composer for proper compensation (Riley). The contract will only be active for five years. At that point in time, it will be reevaluated and renegotiated based upon the piece’s success and marketability. Service organizations, on the other hand, are relatively easy to work with and can be compared to a union of most other occupations. The American Composers Forum, American Music Center, and Society of Composers, Inc. are all prime examples of service organizations. These institutions promote the music of their...

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