Frequently Asked Questions

[ + ] What is Corporate Music?

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What is Corporate Music? Good question.  Once upon a time it was synonymous with bad library music – cheesy, overblown tracks that made you know you were hearing a training film and not a feature film.  Corporate producers started using hipper music, but a problem remains.  Do the CEOs of every Fortune 50o company want to sit through a video of the annual report scored with Gansta rap? Do anyone want  to watch a hip-replacement video scored with edgy Rock?
Corporate applications have special musical needs.  Proud companies need prestigious themes; the people that work there deserve warm tracks; technology calls for futuristic cuts, but not necessarily science fiction….above all Corporate music needs to be positive, optimistic, upbeat.

Our solution at Manchester Music has been to mold our own style, which preserves the best of tradition with live orchestration, and adds in the latest in loops, samples and electronica.

[ + ] What are the advantages of an Annual Blanket?

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  • If you produce more than a couple of projects a year, it will cost less than buying royalty-free tracks or CDs.
  • You have instant access to thousands of tracks, which you search, browse and download at any time (or quickly access from the appropriate CD.)
  • As you get to know the Library, it becomes more than a collection of CDs – a resource that you can quickly navigate to what you need, saving valuable TIME you’d otherwise waste online looking for tracks.
  • Free automatic updates make the library a resource that grows in size and value.
  • Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to fill out any reports.  Purchasing your license on line requires NO PAPERWORK.
  • You can spot temp music in your projects at full resolution, saving the trouble of replacing it later. 

[ + ] What does Royalty Free Music Mean?

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This popular term, more or less synonymous with the older “Buy Out,” is actually quite misleading.  Almost all library music – including that offered by “License Libraries” –is Royalty Free Music. In one sense, no user pays musicians, composers, or libraries any royalties. (The one exception is License Libraries that may charge for commercials on a quarterly basis.) In another sense, all libraries, including Royalty Free Music libraries, involve royalties – performing royalties, collected from broadcasters and paid to composers and publishers by ASCAP and BMI. As a producer, whether you use a Royalty Free Music Library or a License Library, you will never pay ASCAP or BMI, unless you are a radio or TV station. (There are two exception here – “Direct Licenses, addressed in another FAQ; and the rare libraries that offer music not registered with ASCAP or BMI.  You should listen carefully to such music before purchasing.)      
OUR POLICY: Your royalty free music license allows you to use the music unlimited times in productions made at one facility, according to the License Level you purchase.  The exception (addressed in the Highest License Level) is larger production companies producing for many clients. If you are one of those clients, you may still purchase an annual blanket, allowing unlimited usage for a year. Or, you can use the music track download. Each music download is still royalty free, on a per end user basis. For example: you may buyout the rights to one track for use in unlimited productions by one of your clients;  if you want to use the same track for another client you will need to pay again. 

[ + ] What are the advantages of Royalty Free?

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According to the License Level you purchase, you can use the music as many times as you want in unlimited productions. 
If you purchase a collection of CDs, or a whole library, you can use it forever without worrying about renewals. 

[ + ] How does the Annual Blanket work?

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You lease a collection of CDs (virtual and/or physical) for a year. The price depends on the "License Level," which determines what kind of productions you are allowed to use the music for (i.e., what kind of broadcast, number of copies for sale.) Within the License Level, you may use the music unlimited times in an unlimited number of productions.

Your license for any of the productions you make during the year extends in perpetuity, even if you don't renew your license, unless you alter the production.

If you subscribe to the Manchester or Full collections, you will automatically receive between 2 and 4 free updates during the year. As you learn to navigate our music library, discovering which albums have what, it’s also growing, refreshed by new material.

[ + ] Why pay more for music?

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Doesn’t it all sound the same? With the easy availability of loops and samples, not to speak of Garage Band, it seems that just about anyone can slap together a music track these days, and when it comes to background music, who cares as long as it has a beat?

As a producer, you should care. Because not far below the surface of that background music that all sounds the same are profound differences of quality. Especially in situations where the music will be heard more than once, even the casual listener knows the difference, even if they aren’t consciously aware of it. Ever get put on hold when calling tech support at some fortune 500 company and get driven crazy by a short loop of cheesy on-hold music, and wonder how they could let that happen?

It’s the same issue in any media with music.  Background music creates moods, and leaves unconscious impressions. You want to leave your customers and your client’s customers feeling good – and if they feel good about the music, chances are they will feel good about your production.

[ + ] How long are the 30 and 60 second edits?

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Duh. Actually, they are often longer.  We allow the reverb to trail off naturally, in case you want to use them outside of a timed commercial.  Most edits have a button at 29 or 30 after which you can do a quick fade. 

[ + ] Can I purchase a Blanket for more than one year?

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Yes, and we offer discounts.  Please email or call us for details. 

[ + ] What is a sync license?

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In order to combine music with any other medium, such as visuals, sound effects, or a voice over, you are required by law to obtain a synchronization (“sync”) license from the publisher and owner of the sound recording.  As publishers and owners of all the music and recordings in the Manchester Library, we can grant you that license.  Any use of our music requires a sync license; in fact, we don’t allow anyone to use the music “in the clear,” i.e. without synchronization. Some productions also require a mechanical and/or performing license. (See other FAQS.) 

[ + ] What is a mechanical license?

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You are required by law to get a mechanical license if you wish to make copies of your production, whether they are available for free or for sale.  When you buy a sync license we also grant you a mechanical license up to a certain number of copies, depending on the License Level you purchase.

[ + ] What is a performing license?

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By law, any time music is played in public a performing license must be obtained from the publisher. “Public” encompasses many things. Some examples are broadcast on Radio, TV, Cable, and the Internet; trade shows, kiosks, cellphone apps, and music-on-hold.

Most customers don’t need to worry about a performing license. For uses such as trade shows, kiosks, and music-on-hold, the sync license we grant you includes the performing rights.  People are still trying to figure out how to deal with performing rights on the newest media, such as the Internet and Cell Phone rings.  You don’t have to worry about that for now.

If your production is broadcast you won’t have to pay for performing rights unless you are a radio or TV station, or a network, i.e., a broadcaster. If you are a broadcaster in most cases you have a blanket with ASCAP or BMI; all of our music is registered with one or the other of them, and thus you will be covered by your blanket with them. 

[ + ] What is a Direct Performance License?

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Some radio and TV stations, and cable networks, choose not to pay a blanket license to ASCAP or BMI. If you are one of them you will need to buy a Direct License from us for a percentage add-on to the sync fee. Please email or call for details. 

[ + ] Why do I need a music library?

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According to federal Copyright law, you are required to obtain various licenses if you wish to use copyrighted music in any audio or visual production. You must get a synchronization license, and may also need a mechanical and/or performing license.

All of these licenses must be obtained from both the publisher of the composition and the owner of the sound recording.  If you want to use popular music, jazz or classical, you typically have to spend months and thousands of dollars in order to get licenses from both parties (who are usually separate); and there is no guarantee after all that work that you will succeed in getting the license.

As a music library, we are the publisher for all of the music we license, as well as the owner of the sound recordings.  We can license the music to you in seconds, at the same time that we deliver the music to you electronically, at very reasonable, fixed prices.   

[ + ] What if I want to upgrade my license?

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If you’ve purchased a track license at one level, and now want to use the music at a higher level, we can in most cases discount the new license. Email or call with details, and we can get you a promotional code for the discount.  If you need the new license immediately, download it, get in touch and we’ll reimburse you for the discount. 

If you have an Annual Blanket and wish to use music for something above your license level, you can download a track along with the appropriate license. Again, in most cases you will qualify for a discount, which you can receive as above.  If you are using several pieces above your license level it may be more economical to purchase a Blanket at the higher level; depending on how far you are into the Blanket year, we may be able to offer a discount.

[ + ] Can you tell me about Theme Suites?

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The Manchester Music Library contains over 30 Theme Suites, each in the form of theme and variations.  This form comes from the Classical tradition, where each variation differs in mood and tempo.  Here the variations also vary in style and genre.

So a big live orchestral open might be followed by rocking guitars (think motivation.) Then an intimate “people” piece, featuring piano or acoustic guitar; a futuristic technology piece (think chips on the floor of a manufacturing plant, the Industrial part of Corporate/Industrial.) Ending with a huge finale, the orchestra returning with a rock band. Most of the variations also have underscores.  Between all of these elements you can have over 20 minutes of non-repeating music.

The purpose of Theme Suites is to allow you to score a long form project with related music so that it sounds like it was custom scored. You can use as many variations as you need, or are appropriate.

[ + ] Can you explain cue Sheets?

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Can you explain cue Sheets? If you use any of our music for National Broadcast, you will need to fill out a cue sheet and file it with ASCAP and BMI. 

Here’s a link to a sample for you to download:

ASCAP has an informative page here that explains the details
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