YouTube Cover Songs
So you’ve recorded a video of yourself performing your favorite Green Day song on the bassoon, and you’re itching to post it on YouTube for all of your followers.
You’re sitting there at your laptop thinking “Can I do that though? Are there some steps I need to take before uploading this video to my channel?”
You actually might have just Googled “how to release my cover song on YouTube” and wound up on this very page.
Well good, because Affordable Song Licensing can help.
Licensing in the music industry can seem tricky, but for YouTube videos, you’re going to be looking for what is called a synchronization license (or a “sync” license).
A sync license is needed when your cover song is attached to a video, whether that be a YouTube video, a commercial, or an independent film.
Sync licenses are negotiated with the publishers directly.
“So how do I negotiate a sync license with the publisher?”
Affordable Song Licensing can go ahead and contact the publisher for the song you’re covering and negotiate the sync license for you.
In a lot of cases, the publishers will be okay with you posting your video in exchange for monetizing the video (sending the ad revenue your video generates to the publisher directly). In other cases, they might charge a small one-time fee. However, the publisher always has the right to say no to a sync license.
“What happens if I don’t get a sync license and post the video anyway?”
Posting cover songs on YouTube can be great exposure for musicians. But it’s definitely important to understand that a sync license is the one legal way to post your cover song to YouTube.
If you post a video to YouTube without obtaining the appropriate license from the publisher of the song, they can remove the video for copyright infringement and your channel could receive a strike. After so many strikes, your YouTube channel could be taken down completely. So don’t risk posting your cover songs without first taking the proper steps.
“OK. Sounds good to me. But how much does it cost?”
We think posting a cover song to YouTube shouldn’t cost you an arm and a leg. For $49, we’ll call up the publisher for you with the information you provide us regarding your YouTube channel and negotiate a sync license on your behalf. This $49 fee does not cover any additional payments the publisher may charge; it is simply our administrative fee for contacting the publisher. In most instances, the process is quick and easy, and you'll have permission within a week, but certain publishers will require forms to be filled out, and the wait could be longer. If forms are required to be filled out by the publishers, we will fill those out for you and let you know where to send them and who to contact.
If you peruse other options online, you will find that our sync license fees for YouTube are the most affordable option. That’s where we got our name from.
- Sign up for an Affordable Song Licensing account and enter your song information
- Be sure to select the YouTube option for “licensing format” when submitting your project
- Please include your YouTube Channel link as well as a private link to the video you are wanting to post