• Ryan Salsuky

    Thank you so much for the clear explanation! I signed up for this Udemy course that also helped me gain a better understanding of clearing samples.

    If anyone wants to check it out, here you go: https://www.udemy.com/sample-clearance/

  • DJ Thornface

    Great tips, thanks for posting and sharing those awesome advices!

  • Audio Production

    Thank for informations, I am extremely impressed you write style
    i really enjoy this site cause its worth with the usefull info..thank dear

  • corporation

    Here’s an example of a sample replay service: SCORCCiO Sample Replays, worked on Duck Sauce’s – Barbara Streisand.

    http://www.scorccio.com + https://soundcloud.com/scorccio

  • corporation

    Don’t forget SCORCCiO Sample Replays!

    http://www.scorccio.com + https://soundcloud.com/scorccio

  • Person

    I just don’t understand what advice to take from the recent string of articles on this subject. On one hand, you’re advising us to go through a website that allegedly handles all of this by paying the copyright holders. While linking examples of other websites that also do it (beatport). But this article says something completely different, but cites the same examples of legal ramification(Julio Bashmore). Should I just assume that no matter what I do, if the song takes off someone is going to sue me?

    • Saleem

      That is a safe assumption if the sample is not cleared. People or companies usually only go after entities with deep pockets. If people are listening and talking about your music, they are also dissecting it and seeing why it works. Then if there are samples they look at what you sampled and how you used it. Then the word is out and the original artist comes knocking. If the pie you make keeps getting bigger then the original owners of the sample used are going to want a piece.

  • sean

    I don’t know about this- I read the wiki about sampling and it’s never clear about where the line is drawn. I understand if someone’s about to drop an album that it’s safe to take these approaches, but I hardly think anyone ‘needs’ to go to these lengths to use samples in their music.

    I can understand for major releases, but this complicates music unlike anything, and that’s really not the point.

    • Saleem

      Each producer will have to evaluate and consider if the process is it worth it for them in the long run. Most producers will not have to worry about this. If you choose to do it, then hopefully this guide will help. Music always influences and is sometimes used to make derivative works; that will never stop regardless of the legal constraints. With the amount of money on sales dropping, technology may provide a roadblock for sampling in the future.

  • This is good information. Thanks.

    In a bit of a different situation, how would one go about clearing a sample if the sample in question was a line from a movie. In one of my tracks I use the Line Bruce Willis uttered in the original Die Hard, “Yippe Ki Ya M*********r!” I am guessing the route to clearance would go a different way.

    • David De Garie-Lamanque

      this is a good question! there is a lot of this kind of sampling in Drum & Bass, where the producer takes a piece of dialogue from a well-known or cult classic film.
      For example, Blade Runner’s Tears in Rain monologue is heard in countless DnB classics, gangster movies are also a popular source, like Christopher Walken’s lines sampled in Audio’s “Pusher”, or the film Network sampled by Evol Intent and Black Sun Empire with the classic line “I’m a human being god damn it! My life has value!”, or the various samples from the Matrix heard in Hive’s “Neo”.

      What is the procedure to clear such a sample? do we have to contact the film studio and-or the sampled actors’ agents?

      • Saleem

        Legally, Yes. Your best bet would be a sample clearance service, but it will cost. Is Fox or other movie studio going to come after you? Highly unlikely. Does Bruce Willis care, probably not. A movie studio is even less likely to respond to your request and less worried about copyright infringement unless it is film based. Also, consider recreating the sample. This doesn’t avoid the whole copyright issue, since the script is still protected.

  • tswerve

    Excellent article!

  • marquee mark

    This is useful, I’ve got tracks that I’m finishing up and hoping for label attention soon but they have some vocal samples that will need clearing if it’s gonna go large…

  • nefnast

    I know that you can republish any book whose author has been dead for more than 70 years. Isn’t there something similar in music industry? For e.g. you can freely use any song older than 50 years, something like that? By the way copyright is a bullshit, music should be made to generate feelings and ideas, not turnover. Every producer should be grateful if he/she wrote a segment which inspires another person. Cheap stealers will be ashamed by the community anyway.

    • Saleem

      How long does a copyright last?
      The term of copyright for a particular work depends on several factors, including whether it has been published, and, if so, the date of first publication. As a general rule, for works created after January 1, 1978, copyright protection lasts for the life of the author plus an additional 70 years. For an anonymous work, a pseudonymous work, or a work made for hire, the copyright endures for a term of 95 years from the year of its first publication or a term of 120 years from the year of its creation, whichever expires first. For works first published prior to 1978, the term will vary depending on several factors. To determine the length of copyright protection for a particular work, consult chapter 3of the Copyright Act (title 17 of the United States Code). More information on the term of copyright can be found inCircular 15a, Duration of Copyright, and Circular 1, Copyright Basics.