We’ve had our metadata standards included in the music submission guidelines up in our FAQ since the start, but we thought it was time to dive deeper and give you some examples of what we’re talking about! We asked some licensors we’ve enjoyed working with to let us use their songs as examples. Please note, however, the companies mentioned in the metadata text are not connected to this post.
I am going to start today with an example of correct metadata for a recording of a public domain composition. This song would be sent in by the Master licensor, whether that be a record label, Master owner, or a third-party licensor, because, as the composition is public domain, it does not need to be licensed. In this particular example, Music.Film sent me a track for us to dissect.
Supe Troop recommends that as much information as possible be included in the metadata of all digital music submissions. A lot of the fields are self-explanatory, but here are some helpful details specifically regarding metadata for a recording of a Public Domain composition. If you want to know about all the fields, please see the complete metadata standards.
- Composer – In this public domain example, this field begins with “Public Domain” to clearly mark the composition as such. This is really helpful because it both informs us that we don’t need to clear the publishing side if we’re looking at this song in particular and also includes it in the results of a search within our library for Public Domain compositions. Then it is followed by the name of the composer – this informs the music supervisor’s additional research, if necessary.
- Year – Please include the year the master was originally released. In cases where a previously unreleased song is recorded decades before, defer to the recording year.
- BPM – Include if you have it (very helpful), but not required.
- Rating – Do NOT include rating. Leave this empty so music supervisors can use it themselves if they want.
- Grouping – Because the underlying composition is in the public domain, this field looks a little different than others. The first part shows the company clearing the master side (% controlled M), but what follows after the slash is just “Public Domain (100% P)”. Note: this is not the appropriate example if you are claiming an arrangement to the composition. We’ll do a separate post to show you how you should list the publishing information if you are claiming an arrangement of a Public Domain composition.
- Comments – Contact info for licensing party (this info is CRUCIAL). Please also include “consult about territories” here if you have issues regarding territories. A couple examples of this are if you are able to clear worldwide but only if the license will be paid out of the U.S.A. or if you can only clear for specific territories.
- Disc Number – Include if applicable, not required.
We’ll be back soon with our next example!