[cc-sampling] your Negativland music career avoidance counselor

MARK / negativland markhosler at bellsouth.net
Fri Apr 23 20:52:53 EDT 2004



this may be going far afield from the purpose of 
this list. Someone let me know if so...


At 4:56 PM -0700 4/23/04, Z-Train Music wrote:
>A lot of DIY music guides stress the importance 
>of live performances to promote the CD. What's 
>your take -- is it a necessity?


Possibly, but I'm ain't no music career guidance 
counselor! Sorry, cant help you! :)  Our group 
"made it" because we got sued, not because we had 
a "hit" or toured  very much.  And we're still 
perpetually almost broke.



>
>Are there performance options for solo musicians 
>that can't really perform their sample-laden 
>music in the traditional live concert setting?


My advice- stop reading those DIY music guides 
and examine where your notions of success come 
from (they often aren't yours, but are mostly 
constructed by mainstream media, society, culture 
and "DIY music guides"), pull these notions apart 
as best you can, and develop a more personal and 
realistic idea of what "success" really is for 
you as an artist.

From age 17, I always assumed Negativland would 
never be a way to make a living, so my modest 
goal was to have a job I felt good about, but 
only worked 2/3rds time, so that I still had 
enough time and energy left over to make art. I 
was able to do this. I did this for 10 years, 
working on and off as a nursery school teacher, 
before Negativland  had it's "hit" lawsuit and I 
started to make enough to kinda sorta lived off 
of it. Kinda sorta. Other folks with a more 
"Rolling Stone/MTV/Entertainment Weekly" idea of 
success would have quit long before.

Jenny Twoomey of www.futureofmusic.org has told 
me that of the number of folks who  consider 
themselves to be musicians, only 2 percent 
actually live off it (so the RIAA is suing all 
those file sharers to protect only 2% of those 
who make music! Silly). So I am in the same  2% 
as Britney Spears. But even now, 25 years after 
we began,  I don't expect it to last. In the last 
few years, right when we seem more well known 
than ever and we still have loads of ideas for 
new projects, our sales have dropped off to 
nothing. I only make money right now from doing 
talks about our work! And this surprising new way 
for me to make $$ won't last forever, either, so 
who knows? I even recently applied as a 
substitute teacher at a progressive K through 8 
grade school to make a little bit of extra money.

So- don't look at success as a binary option. It 
can, instead, be a very modest, grey and fluid 
thing.

Does this help?


mark





>
>
>
>
>>From: MARK / negativland <markhosler at bellsouth.net>
>>To: "Z-Train Music" <ztrainmusic at hotmail.com>, 
>>ginrai at masterforce.org, 
>>cc-sampling at lists.ibiblio.org
>>Subject: RE: [cc-sampling] Movie Samples In Songs
>>Date: Fri, 23 Apr 2004 07:26:01 -0700
>>
>>At 2:03 PM -0700 4/22/04, Z-Train Music wrote:
>>>Negativland (god bless them) is an exception 
>>>to majority of record labels. The cost of 
>>>litigation can easily sink a small label, so 
>>>they tend to stay away from uncleared samples.
>>
>>Actually there are more than a few small and 
>>not so small labels who don't worry about 
>>samples being cleared.
>>
>>>
>>>To Mark's point, selling your own CDs via 
>>>website, or indy record store will probably 
>>>not land you in court. But you may be hard 
>>>pressed to find a label that will sign you. 
>>>Backing from a label seems to helps in a lot 
>>>of different ways -- production, distribution, 
>>>air play, music publication reviews, etc.
>>
>>
>>Sometimes. They can also have onerous contracts 
>>that can be as bad or worse than dealing with 
>>major labels. Be sure to have someone who can 
>>read such things go over any contract you are 
>>presented with. I believe that 
>>www.futureofmusic.org has a section on their 
>>site where they dissect a typical record biz 
>>contract.
>>
>>>
>>>...btw, how many submissions does negativland 
>>>receive? how many of those do you sign?
>>
>>
>>We don't really "sign" anyone.  Its more of a 
>>collective kinda thing, where we have to a) 
>>really like the work, and b) the artists has to 
>>be pretty much a self financed total 
>>do-it-yourselfer who needs just a bit of hand 
>>holding and  decent distribution. The artists 
>>retain 100% ownership of their work and are 
>>free to leave Seeland at any time. It's not a 
>>way to run a profitable business, I can tell 
>>you that! It's mostly more of a "giving back" 
>>to the community of audio weirdos from which we 
>>sprang.
>>
>>To see who else is on our label, check out our 
>>site. We only do a few of these a year.
>>
>>Mark
>>
>>
>>
>>>
>>>
>>>>From: MARK / negativland <markhosler at bellsouth.net>
>>>>To: "Z-Train Music" 
>>>><ztrainmusic at hotmail.com>, 
>>>>ginrai at masterforce.org, 
>>>>cc-sampling at lists.ibiblio.org
>>>>Subject: RE: [cc-sampling] Movie Samples In Songs
>>>>Date: Thu, 22 Apr 2004 13:14:50 -0700
>>>>
>>>>At 11:42 AM -0700 4/22/04, Z-Train Music wrote:
>>>>>Ginrai,
>>>>>
>>>>>A lot of laptop musicians are emerging, and 
>>>>>we all seem to have a lot questions around 
>>>>>the legality and reality of sampling source 
>>>>>audio from songs, movies, interviews, spoken 
>>>>>word performances or television shows.
>>>>>
>>>>>I think this is how it goes:
>>>>>
>>>>>LEGALITY -- If you sample audio that is 
>>>>>copyrighted by another entity, and you do 
>>>>>not obtain a license for that sample, you 
>>>>>have probably violated copyright law UNLESS: 
>>>>>i) the sample comes from a work that is 
>>>>>"Creatively" licensed (via Creative Commons 
>>>>>or another form of open licensing); or ii) 
>>>>>your use of the sample can be construed as a 
>>>>>FAIR USE exception.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>As far as we are concerned, if's it's a 
>>>>fragmentary and/or transformative use, it's 
>>>>ALL fair use! But that doesn't matter- they 
>>>>can still sue you if they feel like it! But 
>>>>generally they wont feel like it unless you 
>>>>are making large amounts of money.
>>>>
>>>>>  There are some parameters for what 
>>>>>constitutes a Fair Use, and the biggest one 
>>>>>is that you do not directly obtain money 
>>>>>from the sale of the work containing the 
>>>>>sample.
>>>>>
>>>>>REALITY -- Entertainment companies (and 
>>>>>their lawyers) don't care about your 
>>>>>sampling until there's a financial incentive 
>>>>>for them to care. Sample anything you want, 
>>>>>but don't expect to sell your work.  Give 
>>>>>your music away as a demo to your friends 
>>>>>and family, upload it to a file sharing 
>>>>>network, send it to college radio stations, 
>>>>>create a buzz about your self, go nuts.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>We sample like crazy, never ask permission, 
>>>>sell the stuff we make as CDs, and haven't 
>>>>been sued since the early 90's. If you are a 
>>>>do-it-yourselfer, I don't think you have 
>>>>anything to worry about if you release it for 
>>>>sale. BUT - you can have trouble with the CD 
>>>>pressing plants.
>>>>
>>>>Go here on our site to read about our own experiences with this -
>>>>
>>>>http://negativland.com/riaa/index.html
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>mark
>>>>
>>>>>Maybe a professional music producer will 
>>>>>hear your brilliant work and dub you the 
>>>>>next big thing. Maybe not. You'll still have 
>>>>>a cool sounding track. Create what you will.
>>>>>
>>>>>Some advantages to sampling unknown movies: 
>>>>>1) if and when you do license the sample, it 
>>>>>may be cheaper than getting a license to 
>>>>>sample Star Wars; 2) the film may be part of 
>>>>>the Public Domain, in which case a license 
>>>>>is not required to sample. If you're not 
>>>>>planning on licensing the sample, then there 
>>>>>aren't really any non-aesthetic reasons for 
>>>>>mining unknown films.
>>>>>
>>>>>I'm sure someone out there will take issue 
>>>>>with something I've said in this flood of 
>>>>>words.
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>Andy
>>>>>
>>>>>>From: Ginrai <ginrai at masterforce.org>
>>>>>>To: cc-sampling at lists.ibiblio.org
>>>>>>Subject: [cc-sampling] Movie Samples In Songs
>>>>>>Date: Wed, 21 Apr 2004 21:36:13 -0700
>>>>>>
>>>>>>Hi there. New here. I'm a musician and I've 
>>>>>>been experimenting with samples in my 
>>>>>>songs. Not musical samples, mind you, but 
>>>>>>snippets of dialogue from movies. I've 
>>>>>>heard that a lot bands that use samples 
>>>>>>like that just use them and hope no one 
>>>>>>calls them on it (and sometimes they're 
>>>>>>called on it, like when Skinny Puppy got 
>>>>>>into trouble by using a sample from Timothy 
>>>>>>Leery). It seems that it would hardly be 
>>>>>>worth the effort and red tape and money to 
>>>>>>try to get permission for a clip that lasts 
>>>>>>a second and isn't at all musical. I've 
>>>>>>looked through Skinny Puppy liner notes and 
>>>>>>they never mention where the samples come 
>>>>>>from. I've recognized a lot of them, 
>>>>>>Hitchcock movies, Scanners, A Clockwork 
>>>>>>Orange, 2001. Some of them are popular and 
>>>>>>some aren't. From a copyright perspective, 
>>>>>>I imagine it would be defendable in a lot 
>>>>>>of cases under fair use. You could say it's 
>>>>>>your song commenting on the crass 
>>>>>>commercial society that creaked the 
>>>>>>insincere movie and such.
>>>>>>
>>>>>>I guess my question is, should I just use 
>>>>>>movie samples and to hell with it? Is it 
>>>>>>maybe safer to use samples from really 
>>>>>>obscure lame movies that no one has seen? 
>>>>>>Any comments are welcome.
>>>>>>
>>>>>>-Ginrai
>>>>>>
>>>>>>_______________________________________________
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>>>>>>cc-sampling at lists.ibiblio.org
>>>>>>http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/cc-sampling
>>>>>
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>>>>
>>>>
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>>>>AHOY THERE! I have changed my e-mail address and it is now -
>>>>
>>>>mark / negativland <markhosler at bellsouth.net>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>My old address at markhosler at charter.net is no longer being used.
>>>
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>>AHOY THERE! I have changed my e-mail address and it is now -
>>
>>mark / negativland <markhosler at bellsouth.net>
>>
>>
>>My old address at markhosler at charter.net is no longer being used.
>
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