A Music Contract is an artist’s best friend. There are so many reasons to get an agreement in writing with your prospective employer. Admittedly if you are a virtually unknown band trying to get a gig from a rather reluctant club, it may be difficult to negotiate something in writing. On the other hand it is quite amazing to know that there are many performers who let things slide with just a verbal agreement and make no attempt to get a written agreement. This is asking for trouble and is something you should really try to avoid. Here are some reasons to have a written agreement.
Copyright protection: When you sign your first Music Contracts it is important to understand the fine print. In this way you will protect yourself and, if applicable, your band. As mentioned, many times in the performing arts, a verbal agreement is made. The results are often devastating to you the artist. If it not in writing you do not have any legal rights and you can easily lose your copyrights to your popular hit songs. This will result in 100’s and even 1000’s of dollars loss for you and your band. However once you tie the company down to a contract you can keep your copyrights and have everything clearly stated. You get your royalties and the company can still make money.
Cuts down misunderstandings: Music Contracts ensure that you can reference any clause that you or the company may not remember. Over the course of time you or the company may not remember every single clause in your mutual agreement. Having it in writing will allow one or both of you to refresh yourselves as to the terms of the agreement. A verbal agreement can lead to misunderstandings and disputes, as one party will deny what the other one has said. Disputes in turn can get ugly and cost you the engagement..
The legal word in Music Contracts: If anything needs to be disputed in court it will need to be in writing. No court of law will accept any statement unless it is in writing. Of course you will not want to take matters into court if possible but sometimes it is unavoidable. Of course it is much easier to understand the clauses in the agreement when it is in writing. So do not let the company or club run over you, try to get it in writing to avoid any future problems.