Frequently Asked Questions
Many of the questions that we are asked by current and potential members are answered below. If you need a fast solution to a problem, you might find it here. If not, and you think we can help further, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Copyright in Canada exists upon the creation of a work in tangible format (written down or recorded on CD, Tape, Vinyl – mp3s are NOT protected) so once you have a recording of your music, it is protected. This protection is worldwide.
There are several ways to register that copyright. You can go through the Canadian Intellectual Property office (CIPO) and register a title or a collection of songs. Option two is the Library of Congress in the USA. The S.A.C. provides the “Song Vault” a copyright protection service to members only.
It is advised that you protect your rights before any disputes arise, especially if you are submitting your music to outside parties such as Facebook, song contests, song pluggers, etc.
We welcome international memberships and have many members who live abroad. A membership to the S.A.C. still incurs many benefits that can be enjoyed overseas, including connecting with other members, the Song Vault, song assessments and song pitching to name a few.
No, we welcome international members.
Please contact us Mondays to Fridays between 9:30am-5pm EST.
There are several ways to get your song out there. Featuring them on our site, pitching them through our song pitch service, gigging around town, creating a unique YouTube video that can potentially go viral are all great opportunities for exposure. At the end of the day, how your song gets out there is determined by which avenues you choose. Working with radio promoters or contacting radio stations yourself is also a possible path, although making sure your material is ready and suitable for the target genre is also important. All of this takes time and hard work, not to mention maintaining resilience to rejection.
You can look for singers through our members list, advertise in Craigslist or your regional arts newspaper (e.g. Now Magazine in Toronto), or frequent open mics to scope out suitable talent.
You can connect with other members based on the strengths they have listed via their social media accounts. You can also find great co-writing partners by going out to clubs or open mic nights to watch and listen. Your next co-writer may be the one who is performing at your local SongStage!
You actually cannot sell your song, because once you’ve written it, you have protected ownership. That said, you can assign a portion of your publishing rights to a publisher who will then work on your behalf to find placements.
There are several paths to getting placements for your song, you can use our own song pitching service (for members only). You can submit through Sonicbids (a paid service which incurs a cost with every pitch in addition to a membership fee), Broadjam, and American Songspace. There are many other similar services out there, and the landscape is changing everyday, so we highly recommend searching out services yourself through Google. Once you have accumulated a reasonable amount of street credibility, you are more likely to find a publisher who is willing to work with you.
No, you can copyright your songs on their behalf. However, only you will have access to the copyright file. Of course, we think your entire band would benefit from membership through all the resources and networking opportunities we provide.
The Canadian Musical Reproduction Rights Agency Ltd. (CMRRA) is a non-profit music licensing agency, which represents the vast majority of music copyright owners (usually called music publishers) doing business in Canada.
On their behalf, CMRRA issues licenses to users of the reproduction right in copyrighted music. These licenses authorize the reproduction of music in CD’s and cassettes (usually called ” mechanical licensing“) and in films, television programs and other audio-visual productions (“synchronization licensing”). Licensees pay royalties pursuant to these licenses to CMRRA and, in turn, CMRRA distributes the proceeds to its publisher clients. The publisher in turn distributes the songwriter’s portion of such revenues to the songwriter involved.
It is unusual for artists to pay to record your songs. Having one of your song(s) “cut” by an artist means that you potentially will have performance royalties coming your way as well as proceeds of any sales of their album. It is important that they identify the songwriters name(s) on the album to ensure that all the songwriters get proper credit and get paid for the use of their work.
Once the product makes it to market and, IF it gets airplay, or is used in film, TV, documentaries, radio, digital downloads, you can make money from to performance royalties through SOCAN.
Register your song with SOCAN, Canada’s Performing Rights Organization, to collect any future Performance Royalties (Songwriting and Publishing).
You always have the opportunity to pitch your song(s) to artists and other projects to earn royalties and other license (or sync) fees.
If it’s a student project and you don’t want to charge money: Draft an agreement (visit www.creativecommons.org for a Creative Commons Non-Commercial license for reference) that says you do not want to make money off your piece and terms can be renegotiated further down the line if this position changes (i.e. the movie becomes a big hit). If it’s for a commercial project, you will want to negotiate sync fees, as well as.
Here are some of the support services available, please confirm your eligibility:
- Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit: providing $300 a week in income support to eligible workers who are directly impacted by a COVID-19-related public health lockdown in their region up until May 7, 2022
- The Local Lockdown Program: providing businesses that face temporary new local lockdowns up to the maximum amount available through the wage and rent subsidy programs
- Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit: providing income support if you must stop work to care for dependents due to closures, high risk and caregiver availability
- Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit: Up to six weeks of support if you are sick or must self-isolate due to COVID-19
- The Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program: providing support through wage and rent subsidies to, for example, arts, entertainment, hotels, tour operators, travel agencies, and restaurants, with a subsidy rate of up to 75 per cent
- The Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program: providing support through wage and rent subsidies to other businesses that have faced deep losses, with a subsidy rate of up to 50 per cent
- Canada Recovery Hiring Program: extended until May 7, 2022, for eligible employers with current revenue losses above 10 per cent and increasing the subsidy rate to 50 per cent
- Canada Performing Arts Workers Fund: To be eligible for funding, the applicant must serve or represent workers in the live performance sector and be a union or guild, artist association or arts service organization, benevolent fund with a mandate related to the sector, Indigenous peoples institution or organization that represents workers in the sector (applications must be received by March 4, 2022)