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  • Category: Music

    Who can have a right on a film song?

    Songs and the back score music play a vital role in the making of a movie and sometimes the movie becomes super hit because of the music itself. We have seen many such entertainers in Hindi and other languages. The writer of the song, the composer and the singer gets equal credit but in many cases the music director only would stand first to get the credit. We have such great musicians in the recent times like A R Rahman and Ilayaraja from the South.

    The recent row between Ilayaraja and the veteran playback singer S P Bala Subramanyam regarding the stage shows being conducted by the later in USA has given room for a fresh thought regarding the rights on a song. Ilayaraja served a legal notice to SPB for staging the songs composed by him without his consent and earning money. Generally, all stage shows go with various musical hits and this notice raises eyebrow from the filmy corner. If the version is correct, then the consent of the actual singer and the writer, the movie Director and Producer should be necessary.

    Who can have a right on a film song? What is your take on this?
  • #593755
    More than anyone, the film producer has the right over the entire film including the song. The film director and music director is paid by the movie maker, the singer is paid by the music director, the lyrics writer is paid by the film director. So without any doubt, I would say that the producer has all the rights over all the issues connected with the film.
    No life without Sun

  • #593765
    It is based on agreement between Producer and Music director. Ilayaraja clearly mentioned that he had agreement with producers for 5 years only. Whoever conducts commercial stage shows should get permission from the respective copy write holder. Whoever organize commercial stage shows should pay the royalty. I am sure SPB very well aware of it and don't know why he created unnecessary controversy. No one can sing Rehman songs in commercial shows without his permission or pay royalty to him and Ilayaraja awaken very late.

  • #593767
    Though producer might have invested, director might have scripted the song well with good pictuarization, the actors might have gave their cent percent contribution, the lyricist might have penned down a wonderful song and the play back singers might have rendered so nicely, but it is the music director who has full credits over a song success and its sustained popularity and therefore Music directors are most respected in the film Industries after the producers, directors. So I fully support Ilayaraja's claim that he be consulted before picking up his songs in public platform or pay loyalty for it.
    K Mohan
    'Idhuvum Kadandhu Pogum "
    Even this challenging situation would ease

  • #593775
    In my opinion ,Music composers have no right to claim on the songs for which they composed music.

    Any asset we say we own only when we have paid for it. In a movie it is the movie producer who has paid money for everything in the film. Al others are like person who do some job and get paid. Music composer also gets paid for his service. Hence he cannot claim right on the song. In case he claims then the singer and lyricist also should be given their share equally. Unless the song is sung by a singer and it is attached to a movie , no one knows about the song. So it is the producer first and singer as second who should have priority rights if at all.

    The music composers simply use the tunes or 'Ragas' originated by the great legendary composers like Thyagaraja, Deekshithar, Shayama Shastri, Swati Thirunal and man like them. However these old greats have not claimed any right and whatever is available is traditional knowledge. The modern music composers simply use these traditional ragas, tunes or music and make very slight changes and adaptations on the same base. They do not have any special rights because they use whatever is traditional knowledge.

    The film maker only should have the royalty rights on full or part of a film including songs, dialogues, scenes etc.

  • #593805
    The film producer or the Company which is making the film will have all rights on the entire movie. In part or full nothing can be used or reproduced without their consent.The movie maker is the legal rights holder. All others are being paid for their work. Individuals can't raise any issue on this.

    Singing a song on a stage show composed by a musician from a movie should be allowed by the producer but not by others. We have been seeing many mimicry performances. In that they will be using dialogues written by writer for a movie and told by the actor. Now it will also become a point that the dialogues written by the writer used by mimicry artist. Hence he has to pay royalty.

    When people working on some new inventions in a company and getting a patent, it should be on the name of the company only. Names of the inventors will be mentioned in the patent but they will not have any right to claim for the earnings out of that patent. The individual was already paid for it.

    always confident

  • #593814
    Dear members,
    Now I have a full pledged doubt on singing film songs. There are many musical troops, groups and orchestras playing film songs during wedding/reception and many other functions. They play the famous film songs for entertainment. Do they take permission from the film producers or directosr or music director or the play back singers? Is it not ridiculous to have a copy right for such songs which have been copied, played and listened by individuals by sitting at home. What is the great copy right fun in singing film songs by the same playback singers or other singers? Why should a music director claim it as a copy right when he has already been paid for creating music and tune for it? If at all, there is some right, it should be with the producer of the film who has spent money and bought it by paying to the music director and the playback singers.

    No life without Sun

  • #593847
    It is purely a business deal between the parties concerned. So, opining about the subject matter, without knowing the terms & conditions of the deal, is not justified or logical.
    When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen, you may learn something new!

  • #593851
    In my opinion, the writer or the lyricist should have the right over the films' song. Because writing a song for a movie on a given subject is not an easy task. Though the music director composes the song, the entire pain of writing down the song is done by the writer. You enjoy the song not just because of good composition but because you can absorb the meaning of every line that has been penned down by the writer. All those emotions have been put in the song by the writer. I am not saying that music direction and singing are an easy task, but it is the author who owns the masterpiece! The creator is always the owner.

  • #593852
    In most of the posts above I have seen that majority of them are in favour of the film producer. Well, I agree that he is the one who is taking the entire expenditure of the movie on his shoulder's. Yes, being a producer he has the right on the whole film, but it does not mean that he has right on the films' songs. If it is so, then according to you he is also having the right over the movie script too. And if that is the case, then instead of the songs' writer and the story writers' name, the name of producer should come. The producer is just paying the salary to the respective artist's, and that does not mean he has bought their work or its copyright.

  • #662830
    good questions, learn lots of information, thank you

  • #668202
    [Response removed by Admin. Read forum policies.]
    “Each day provides its own gifts.” —Marcus Aurelius

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