Buying exclusive beats, and buying beats in general, can be tricky and complicated. This is especially true if you are just getting started in the music industry or just getting your music career off the ground. But don’t worry! I’m here to provide you with some essential tips to help you and protect you when buying exclusive beats.
Let’s get started!
Know What You Are Getting
When it comes to buying exclusive beats, there are a couple of different options you will find.
In most cases, you will find beats that you can buy the exclusive rights for but that have been leased to other artists previously. So while you get the exclusive rights to the beat from that point on, the other artists who have leased the beat previously still get to use the beat under their lease terms.
On the other hand, there are exclusive beats for sale that are strictly exclusive. These beats have never been leased or used by anyone else. You don’t have to worry about other people using the same beat as you or hearing your beat on the radio or online somewhere else. Whoever purchases the beat literally gets to use it exclusively and is the only one with it.
So, before you buy exclusive beats, make sure you know what you want. Do you want the exclusive rights to a beat that has been used by other artists or do you want something that is original and yours alone? Once you know what you want, find out if the beats you are wanting to buy fit what you want. You can do this buy researching the website or marketplace you are buying the beats from or simply ask the producer/beatmaker via their contact page, DM, or phone number if they have it listed.
Related: What Are Exclusive Rights to a Beat?
When you buy the exclusive rights to a beat, it’s important to know what files are included. In most cases a MP3 file, a WAV file, and the track stems (WAVs) should be included. But, don’t just assume this. Check on the producer’s website or wherever you are buying the beats from and make sure all of the files that you need are included. If you can’t find this information contact the producer and they can provide this for you.
Look Over the Contract
Once you find exclusive beats that you want, look over the contract if possible or the licensing terms. This is especially important if you’ve never dealt with the producer/beatmaker before.
Most producer websites and marketplaces, such as Beatstars, make the contracts and licensing terms available for you to view. Look over the terms and make sure you accept the included terms. Remember, once you purchase the beat the license/contract is final and there aren’t any refunds. So it’s best to look over the terms prior to making your purchase.
If you have any questions about the contract or terms, contact the producer or beatmaker and they should be able to clear up any questions you might have.
What Are the Publishing Rights Splits?
When buying exclusive beats there are usually going to be publishing rights involved. Publishing rights determine the percentage of revenue that each person involved with the finished song receives via performance royalties. These are typically only important when the finished song is registered with a PRO (Performing Royalties Organization). They don’t typically apply towards online downloads, sales, or streams on a music platform such as iTunes or Spotify. But, mechanical royalties could come into play here if the producer wants a chunk of the pie from those sales, streams, etc. Mechanical royalties are usually 100% to the artist/label, but be sure by checking the contract.
Back to publishing rights. In the exclusive rights contract you will see a clause that states the percentage that the artist is to receive and the percentage that the producer/beatmaker is to receive. Common splits are 50/50, 70/30, and some producers even do a 100/0 split which gives 100% to the artist. These 100/0 splits are also known as “royalty-free”.
If you aren’t able to access the contract (or a sample contract) to find this information, contact the producer and they can fill you in on what the publishing splits look like.
Tips for Buying Exclusive Beats
I hope these tips have helped you! The areas that we covered are vital when it comes to purchasing exclusive beats. Now you should be better equipped and prepared to understand what to look for and what you are buying.
Feel free to leave any questions or comments in the comments section at the bottom of the page!