Music License

Business units do not have the authority to play music in the public places for any commercial purpose without acquiring music license.  Copyright Act, 1957 made it mandatory for all the cafes, restaurants, hotels, pubs, bars, that play pre-recorded music in their premises, to obtain music license.

Copyright Society for Sound Recording which is Phonographic Performance Limited {PPL} issues music license to the restaurants and cafes who wanted to play music in their premises.

In case, any business unit is willing to have singers in their premises for the singing or live concert purpose then business have to approach Indian Performing Rights Society (IPRS) for the license.

Cafes, restaurants, hotels, pubs, or bars cannot play music without holding music license. Government of India has made it an obligation for these places to obtain the music license before they start playing music in their premises. The purpose of this license is to give credit to the creator of the art for heart stealing composition and at the same time it safeguards their rights.

Who can obtain a Music License?

Any business who wants to play pre-recorded music in their premises should acquire music license to avoid any forfeit. Business unit can be a hotel, restaurant, pubs, events, malls, cinema halls, sports events, product launch, aircrafts or any other place where music is played.

Business Personnel Need IRPS License If They Are Involved In The Following Activities:

  • Public performances
  • Band performances
  • Singers performing at your business

Benefits of Music License

  • Through music license, the artist can use the platform where they can show their talent to the entire world.
  • Music license enhances the popularity and awareness of the particular song of an artist.
  • Creation of an artist is protected through copyrights reducing the chances of stealing or copying the song.
  • Music license provides artists various earning sources through an increasing number of downloads, subscription, the total number of views, etc.
  • Artists enjoy the right of performing their work in an event, concerts, broadcasting, etc.

Documents required to get Music License

  • Personal details such as name, address, nationality
  • Details regarding the business
  • Detailed list of music type that you will play
  • If you are into an LLP business then it is necessary for you to submit certificate of incorporation
  • PAN Card
  • GST registration certificate
  • Address Proof such as Electricity bill, driver’s license, voter ID card

Types of Music License

Following types of music license are allotted to the artist for their creations:

Sync License

Under this method, music already created is synced with some visual media. A broad range of users such as TV commercials, advertising agencies, film studios, etc. holds music license.

Mechanical License

The purpose of this license is to make artists’s creation available to the general public in the creation of CDs, publication of music online or any other form of distribution. The artist having copyrights of their work is paid for the agreement signed by them to allow the distribution or recreation of their original work. A mechanical license is needed even for making a slight change in original components such as remix, adding own lyrics, changing anything of the original composition, etc.

Master License

The Master license is complex than other licenses and is issued in conjunction with sync license. This license allows the holder of such license to use the pre-recorded version of the song in any audiovisual project but doesn't allow re-recording the song.

Public Performance License

This license is the most common form of a license issued for broadcasting an artist's copyrighted work. This license is obtained by the businesses playing music in their jukebox or any kind of public-performance such as concerts.

Categories of Music License

  • Music License for Public Performances in multiplex, hotels, events premises, malls, pubs, banquets, etc.
  • Music license for broadcasting music on television and radio.
  • Music license for interactive and non-interactive music streaming on the internet.
  • Music license for caller ring back tune
  • Music license for the use of sounds or music on commercial TV, advertisement, etc.

Registration Procedure to get Music License in India

  • Start the procedure to get a music license by selecting the category or type for the music license, i.e., in which type an applicant wants to get his music license.
  • The creation of an account is done online on the official website of IPR. Start with selecting the type of license and then complete the necessary details such as the name of applicant, address & contact details of an applicant, Email-id, GST, password, and user-id for login credentials.
  • On completion of the application, online verification is done through mobile OTP verification.
  • Once the verification is done, online application is completed by payment of government fees online through payment gateways after which the online receipt will be sent through SMS or E-mail.
  • After the successful registration, the IPRS license issue the Introduction Letter to an applicant that implies the registration of the applicant with the IPRS database.

Penalty for the Offender

Section 63 of the Copyright Act says that any individual who breaches the copyright or other rights is accountable for

  • Detention for a period of not less than six months which may extend upto three years and
  • Offender is liable to pay a fine of not less than fifty thousand rupees which may extend to two lakh rupees

As per Section 63 A any individual who infringes the copyright or other rights is accountable for

  • Detention for a period of not less than one year which may extend to three years and
  • With a fine not less than one lakh rupees which may extend to two lakh rupees