Songs of the past have value
A quirk in U.S. federal copyright law does not cover songs recorded before February 15, 1972. So, most artists who created music from before 1972 are not compensated when their work is played on digital radio, satellite radio and, of course, FM radio. That means that the hitmakers of Motown, the legends of Jazz & Blues, and the people who gave birth to Rock n’ Roll aren’t being paid, or worse, have to spend years in court trying to recoup lost compensation that they would have received had they recorded their songs after February 15, 1972.
Most artists who created music from before 1972 are not compensated when their work is played on digital radio, satellite radio and, of course, FM radio.
Both digital and AM/FM radio have stations and formats dedicated exclusively to such music – they earn millions from these iconic records, but refuse to pay anything to the performers who created them, shortchanging creators and copyright owners well over $60 million a year for digital airplay alone.
Three state courts have sweepingly dismissed the arguments advanced by digital services for not paying elderly artists and recent legislative activity sets down a clear marker in support of these rulings.
Pre-72 recordings have value and their creators must be fairly compensated when they are used.
Tell your elected official to support the Fair Pay Fair Play Act (H.R. 1836) to ensure music creators are fairly compensated for their work.