Being a struggling musician can be a pain in the ass. Not only is your success resting on your optimistic shoulders but your wallet is also filled with nothing but hope and good intentions. So is a lawyer really something you should be worrying about at the moment? NO, NO, it shouldn’t. The average entertainment lawyer can charge anything between $400 and $800 hourly, which can be way too much scratch for an independent, still-upcoming artist. Right now we need to worry about actually making money from music, not making lawyers rich.
You know better than to sign anything you don’t fully understand, we hope. There are however, many a story of artists being duped into signing record deals that weren’t completely in their favor, or contracts that stifle their creativity, eventually. Kesha, Lil Wayne, and then there was Prince, who changed his name to an unpronounceable symbol just to screw with Warner Bros because his contract stipulated he wouldn’t actually own his music. There will be a time when you have to call in the lawyer.
Because not even on your best day could you comprehend a lengthy, densely-written recording contract that sounds like it was written by some bumpy-headed alien from ‘Star Trek.’ Recording contracts are typically unfair and recording companies will always try to bone you, no matter what they say. It has been happening since forever, from Frank Sinatra and Van Morrison right down to Metallica. They call it the Music Business for a reason.
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