Spinnup Academy: Lesson 9 – Money Matters

Our penultimate Spinnup Academy lesson covers perhaps one of the most important aspects of your music career: MONEY. How do you even make money from your music as an artist and how does this work in a major label system? All this and more is covered this week, brought to you by Universal Music’s own David Hawkes (Managing Director of UK Commercial and Creative). Keep scrolling for the video and notes are below:


Difference between Record Label & Publishing: A publisher is for a songwriter and a label is for a performing artist. A label would administer and master the rights on behalf of a performing artist.


Artist Royalty: This is one of the ways you get paid as a signed songwriter or performer. Once signed, you will usually be given an advance (think of this as a loan to live on). When your track/Ep/album is released and sold/streamed, you receive a percentage of this sale which will usually go towards ‘recouping’ or paying back your advance. Once the balance of the advance has been fully recouped, you will then receive the sales percentage from your music.


Other ways money can be made from your music include radio play, feature on a TV advert, feature in a film, licensing from a brand, licensed onto a compilation album (which all fall under the broader category of sync). For each of these, you will receive a pre-agreed royalty (percentage).


Live & Touring: Before going on tour, you will need to look at building your team to include a manager to help oversee the tour logistics on your behalf and a live agent. Labels may also take a small cut from your live earnings (such as your shows) as a result of investing more in you as an artist (meaning you receive a higher advance).


Team: When on the path of success, you will need a manager with connections, an accountant, a lawyer and a live agent.


That’s all for this lesson! Did you miss last weeks lesson? Click here to get up to scratch! Huge love to the incredible KamiKwazi for soundtracking this lesson with his track ‘Feels‘ be sure to check him out on his instagram, and Twitter. and our past Introducing article on him. Join us next week for our last Spinnup Academy lesson which will look at ‘Legal & Business Affairs’ and have a sneak peak at the rest of our series here.