A label managed to outdo itself this time!

A label managed to outdo itself this time!

Yeah. Straight rip. We seem to be doing decent as DYI. Might just go next step and make up a label.

Kinda wanted label deal to break us out of current market…now the offers are not very lucrative, kinda “what do I need you for?” category.

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WORD … :sunglasses:

lol, can i edit that…? maybe you could call the label Decent Records, lol (sp) :wink:

like Neat Records (UK) ? LOL

No offense intended to our international audience, but KRAUTROCK Records might tickle the germans more, I worked/lived there for a year (we never mentioned the war once… I promise :wink:

Aber ich spiele kein Krautrock mate :slight_smile:

‘but I play no krautrock, mate…’

lol, I have no idea how to categorize heavy metal. I guess I heard a few too many Skorpions songs way back then… (much preferred Die Toten Hosen) - but no offense intended.

I’m absolutely sure Heavy Metal (in all its forms) and Taxes will outlive me/kill me. :wink:


No offense taken!

Actually I looked at their paperwork again as a fellow musician wanted to share a few laughs while we were waiting for the out of this world talent of Uli Roth to get onstage.

So it turns out that Golden Robot Records actually uses a subsidiary, X-Ray Records, to make these sucker deals, so it doesn’t befall on the head or “reputation” of bigger label.

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We were paid both publishing and artist royalties in advance for our last record.


Ohhh man, how awesome! I’d love hear about it if you have any words to describe it. :beerbanger: I’ve been an Uli fan going back to his time with the Scorpions. Wow, that’s like 4 decades now.

What factors do you think brought that about? Was it something you were able to negotiate, or the policy of the label with all artists, or was it based on the circumstances of your band (i.e. longevity, etc).

We didn’t negotiate it, so we assumed that it was standard, but we don’t know that for sure. The exploitation rights are signed over in perpetuity, so maybe that had something to do with it.

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It was wonderful…I’ve also seen him in 2013 on tour with Andy Timmons and Jenifer Batten and honestly age is beginning to show a little bit, but he still has his chops and brought along a great band. 2 more guitarists and they harmonized arpeggios and all played orchestrally and tight at the same time. The drummer was absolutely phenomenal.

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ok, another ‘olde worlde’ record deal generalization for the musicians/dreamers among you: not that I care, as Im not on THAT side of the glass…

Publishing is ‘kinda’ (in years gone by, anyway) considered bulletproof, they (the label) have to pay that out upfront or the thing doesn’t even get REPLICATED, never mind sold… Thats why everybody wants a part of it. NEVER give that away cheaply.

Royalties usually happen up to 18 months behind the deal. But they are mainly the negotiable part of the deal, you may get something back if you ‘recoup’ - or maybe not (lol).

Thats why you should ALWAYS ask for 18 months money as an advance, if that option is even available.

Anyway, IF they (usually a major label) retain you after a loss, you can always get another advance for the next album, and get plunged further into debt.

Dont forget that ALL the expenses come out YOUR Royalty share…

usually, if not always :slight_smile:


I don’t know about the USA but in the UK, this only applies to very small labels and individuals. Most labels (ours included) have a licence, which means they can pay according to pieces sold, rather then pieces printed.

Twelve months.

The thing is, you can ask for whatever you like, but when the label says ‘no’, what are you going to do about it? Refuse to sign?

Advances are optional in our case. You don’t have to take them.

Not in our case, although advances do have to be offset by sales at some point.


in the UK, its possible to get a promotional license, where the licensee (label) pays no mechanicals to the songwriter up front, as long as the songwriter/s declare/s the songs as their own…

but I wouldn’t want any more than 10% of my product (pressed) to be registered as ‘promotional material’ - or I may find myself up shit creek, when trying to claim back my royalty payments on the remaining 90% of that product later.

Re: the 18 months…

As an example, IF I were to sign a deal on Jan 1st. and require a $200k advance for my band / manager to cover 12 months expenses and then incur another $200k in recording costs within the first six months.

By July 1st, (first accounting period) I would have probably have written, produced and recorded the first album but still sold nothing. And don’t forget that awesome video I made and now owe 50% of, still needs paying for.

By Dec 31st, (second accounting period), I would have to have recovered (recouped) the $400k in expenses from my bands 18% royalty share of confirmed PPD sales (less 3% producer points) before I could expect to receive a cheque.

Hence the extra six months, to the next accounting period (June 30th), before I saw any money. So, it’s perfectly acceptable to ask for an extra $100k up front to cover that gap.

Yes. Its no different to having a car payment you cant afford, or any other contract you shouldn’t sign, for obvious reasons.

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I don’t mean a promotional licence, I mean an AP1 licence. Labels can undergo a credit check performed by PRS and then get approved by the PRS board in order to get a licence that enables them to pay mechanical royalties on quarterly sales rather than on printed media.

Yes, easy to say so but not so easy to throw away in practice, when it’s the only deal on the table with no sign of another arriving any time soon. Ultimately most labels offer reasonable deals in my experience, it doesn’t help them or their reputation to be cutting deals that screw artists over.

This thread is about indpendent labels. In my experience they don’t get involved with recording these days - that tends to be handled by the artists themselves.

Vaughn, just out of curiosity, when have you dealt with a major label? I wasn’t aware that you had experience with them. When was this? Or is everything you say here stuff you’ve read online?

Im not a musician, manager or recording label, but I did consider the latter for a while.

And I have worked with a lot of musicians, many hundreds of bands at all levels over thirty years, mixing live and also in the studio, so I get to talk to them about it quite a bit. They are mostly from the sixties or seventies era, now though. My current project used to be signed to CBS and Polydor, for example.

The bit about the 18 months came from a music lawyer I knew, representing a younger band I was recording demo’s for, maybe about 2006. It seemed like common sense to me.

I don’t think the major labels try to screw bands over, as such - they just have a low success rate, so contracts are heavily weighted in their favor; the bands expenditure isn’t really their problem.

The indie ‘labels’ who don’t produce or invest in anything, however - may just be hoovering up talent, hoping to hit the jackpot one day - to sell the contract on to a major.

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They may be, but my experience is that they are run by grass roots passionate fans of the genres they sign.

AJ, good info, tks…

Yes, the AP1 looks to kick the can down the road a bit, to at least get the product to the retailer before you get hit with the bill for the mechanicals.

This is good for smaller labels with their first potentially massive hit on their hands for sure! Further up the food chain, it seems to make good cashflow sense too.

More reason to add more money to your advance :slight_smile:

Quite possibly, the one legit indie label offer (not the one mentioned here in original post) that we got was basically a distro deal with 50/50 split on music sales, with an option for them to sell us at some point in 2 years :slight_smile: