less than 1 minute read


Executive Office: Chief Executive Officer • President • Vice President/general Manager (major Music Publisher)

Publishers are song salesmen. They are in the business of obtaining copyrights by signing staff writers or purchasing existing catalog and exploiting their use. They do this by licensing song rights to artists, record companies, film and television studios, and advertisers. The publisher negotiates and issues licenses for songs, collects earnings, and ensures that proper royalties are paid. Publishers also act as managers of the songwriter's career. They critique newly written songs and give creative input, publicize the writer's achievements, and set career goals. An essential role of the publisher is to introduce the writer to other songwriters, artists, and producers with whom they may co-write or pitch songs to. Publishers also may try to secure recording contracts for artist/writers or production jobs for producer/writers.

This chapter focuses on five areas of music publishing: Executive Office; Creative Services; Film, Television and Advertising Licensing; Business Affairs; and International. Similar names are often used to define departments within large publishing firms, while smaller companies may only divide the responsibilities into Creative Services and Business Affairs or Administration.

Additional topics

Job Descriptions and Careers, Career and Job Opportunities, Career Search, and Career Choices and ProfilesCareers in the Music Business