Music Copyrights

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer and this is not legal advice.  This pages is just what I have learned from my reading up on the subject. You should always consult with a lawyer about copyright issues.

Music copyrights for Video

There are a few things to look out for when mixing music and video. Many people are under the false impression that purchasing a CD of music gives them the right to use that music in their videos. This is true for your own personal use but as soon as you give a copy of the video away or even show it outside of your home at a public gathering, you are breaking the law unless you obtain permission from the copyright holders.

Purchasing a CD of music gives you the right to listen to the music. When you synchronize that music to video images, you are creating a derivative work which requires a Sync license. These are usually granted by the Publisher of the music because it is independent of any artist who may have covered the song. You will also need to get rights for the rendition of the song you want to use.

If you are creating a video, you are an author of a work that has its own copyrights. Please respect the copyrights of others, as you would want your own work respected and please consult with a copyright attorney to be sure that what you intend to so is legal.

Links to articles on the topic:

Links to perform copyright searches:

About the Author

John Rofrano John Rofrano is a Senior VASST Trainer and the author of Instant ACID, a book on Sony ACID Pro software, from CMP Books. He is also the developer of Ultimate S Pro, Vegas Pro Production Assistant, Mayhem, and other software plug-ins including the FASST Apps for Sony Vegas Pro NLE software. John has been a performing musician, singer, songwriter for over 40 years, and programmer and computer architect for the past 28 years. He is also a forum moderator at the Creative COW.