performance rights organization

Performing Rights Organizations - PROs

I’ve seen some misinformation floating about and want to clarify something. The PRO that licenses songs for an artist does NOT have control over merchandising or media where that song is used, they simply issue licenses and collect and distribute royalties. If the business using a song doesn’t have the proper licensing, the PRO will lower the hammer, but if the use is approved by the artist, the PRO will comply with a license.

If 1DHQ wants “Story of My Life” to be used for a kiddie video game, GMR will license the music to the creator - they are the accountants, not the gatekeepers of good taste.

It wasn’t ASCAP or BMI that agreed to allow Nike to use The Beatle’s song “Revolution” in a commercial. It was Michael Jackson, the owner of the publishing rights.

Adele Windfall: This is How the ‘25’ Songwriters & Producers Split Up Over $13 Million - BILLBOARD

Adele’s 25 is a gift that keeps on giving to the music business, spreading wealth beyond her labels (XL and Columbia/Sony) and publisher (Universal) to retailers, ­performing rights organizations and, not least, the 16 songwriters and producers who collaborated with her on the album.

The chart reflects how much each of them has earned from songwriting and producing so far, using the appropriate standard statutory rates and formulas for sales and interactive and noninteractive streaming, and an estimated hit-song rate of $2.50 per spin for radio airplay. Those rates were applied to U.S. sales of 8 million, such U.S. digital radio noninteractive streaming as ­iHeartRadio simulcasts (excluding Pandora, which does not report its playlists to Nielsen Music), such U.S. ­interactive streaming as Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube (only for the single “Hello”) and U.S. radio airplay. All airplay and sales data were supplied by Nielsen Music through the week ending Jan. 28.

Billboard estimates that Adele – who ­co-wrote each song on the album – and other songwriters have reaped almost $9.6 million in royalties; the songwriters’ publishers combined have taken in nearly $1.9 million. The album’s 13 producers and co-producers (many of whom are also songwriters) shared $3.1 million.

And with the Grammy Awards just days away, expect those numbers to grow ­significantly.



  • Philip Lawrence: $229,400
  • Bruno Mars: $211,340
  • Christopher Brody Brown: $86,300
  • Ari Levine: $82,680