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Can my band record covers ????

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Estimable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 89
Topic starter  


Need some solid advice here.

My band will be recording an album by the end of the year, and we would like to inc 2 covers on it, that our live audience really enjoy us doing.

The 2 songs namely being,

Metallica's - Nothing Else Matters
The Police - Every Breath You Take

I'm not naive enough to just think, we can go ahead and do it, but who do I ask for permission, where can I find out the legalities of this subject, where do I find out who owns the copyright ?????

I've had a look around on the net, but it seems you have to pay just to get clear advice.

Find all you need in your mind, If you take the time

Noble Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 2167

Check with; they have the performance rights for just about everything.

Eminent Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 25

Generally speaking, there's a mechanism called compulsory mechanical licencing that operates in pretty much the same way worldwide. This means that when you record someone else's copyrighted material, you simply need to pay the copyright owner (usually the publisher) the appropriate rate of mechanical royalty and they're obliged to grant you the licence. Having said that, there may be certain twists to it where you live - it's best to consult a lawyer.

As for finding out who owns the copyright - check out the album sleeves. The publishing information should be there. In all likelyhood however, the people you want to get in touch with is the Performing Rights Society. They have a virtual monopoly on collective copyright administration for the UK and almost certainly the money will be going through them.

I hope this has been of some help.

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Trusted Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 57

There is some pretty good info on recording cover songs here:

EDIT: I notice the original poster is from the UK, and the information in the above link only applies for the US. Sorry about that. It may be of interest to other GN readers though.

Now look at them yo-yo's that's the way you do it you play the guitar on the MTV