Monthly Archives: November 2012

Help Make This Happen! “Give Fans the Credit”

Ack ack ack ack ack ack ack ack!

I’m over the moon about this, you guys. I seriously think it needs to happen.

I get email alerts from the Grammy Museum, and today I saw one on an initiative called Give Fans the Credit. It’s for:

Beatles Stories

Real music fans want to know who wrote, produced, and played on their favorite tracks. Making credits available so that fans can find out what other songs a songwriter wrote or a producer produced will lead to more music discovery.

The Recording Academy®, the organization internationally known for the GRAMMY® Awards, has launched “Give Fans The Credit” – a new campaign that helps enhance fans’ discovery of new music by working to ensure all music creators are credited for their work on digitally released recordings. Honorary Ambassadors for this campaign include: 12-time GRAMMY-winning producer T Bone Burnett; GRAMMY-winning songwriter Lamont Dozier; singer/songwriter/percussionist Sheila E; singer/songwriter Skylar Grey; five-time GRAMMY-winning producer/songwriter Jimmy Jam; two-time GRAMMY-winning producer/songwriter RedOne; GRAMMY-winning singer/songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist Ryan Tedder, and three-time GRAMMY-winning producer Don Was.

An online petition for fans to sign along with further information is available at www.givefansthecredit.com. Get involved and help us convince digital music services to let fans know who made the music they enjoy!

Honestly, this accreditation is so long overdue. On my music blog, I got slammed once for putting up the wrong co-songwriter credit on a Jason Mraz, which I had pulled from Wikipedia (I had searched multiple sites and Wiki seemed the best out of the ones I found). And it was so bogus because Wiki then started using my blog post as a citation source! The internet is just a whirlpool of very potentially bogus information, especially when it comes to truth and origins of data, so trustworthy sources and authorities in different fields really need to be available.

Back to my blog story, I only found out who the proper songwriters were from a tip someone left in the comments – music performing rights royalty organizations like ASCAP, BMI and SESAC have a search portion of their site where you can verify who actually worked on a song, but it’s a big hassle (and in some cases, there’s still a disclaimer regarding accuracy of information!). Because each person involved may be under a different music organization, you may end up having to search all three sites using different terms to find what you want. And think of what search errors you can find if you’re looking for a song with a very common title, or that has been remade by the same artist!

This kind of information should be available, for matters of verification as well as for the benefit of fans. I can’t think of a person in music who wouldn’t want their name to be credited in their work, and it doesn’t sound at all difficult for digital music services to add on. I’m sure all the documentation exists already, so a lot of it would just be some sort of copy/paste algorithm to have the information automatically attached to songs.

One of the primary plusses of the internet and digital services is that they’re supposed to make things easy and convenient for users. This sort of feature would really add to that aspect, and I see it as incredibly beneficial to anyone involved and/or interested in music: A dance fan who loves the production on a catchy track can search by production team and find more songs in the same vein. You’re a songwriter and you think a song is dope; now you can find the names of whom you would potentially want to work with. A young listener, inspired by a certain sound, finds out who’s playing guitar on a track and can easily locate other songs the guitarist has played on.

If you’re into this, please please please get involved and sign online – it’s so easy, all you enter is your name and a valid e-mail address.

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