I know I'm not a regular around here, but I have lurked for years, posted some. Suffice it to say I've been in the music biz for 40+ years(musician,recording engineer,producer) and this is really bugging me now.
So, I show up for our newly established(1 month) thursday night jazz gig at a small restaurant in our small town in Maine. I am told after the first set that next week is our last as the ASCAP guys have informed them of the license fee of $1400.00/year to have live music. I know we can get around this(can't we??)by performing only original songs. I know the owners well, there's no hard feelings, but I feel this is just shakedown tactics on the part of ASCAP. These folks just can't afford that fee plus paying us and I get it. They also own another restaurant /bar down the street and do pay the fee there as they have a DJ, it's clear it's all covers/recorded playback.
Anybody else irritated by this practice? It's a bit over the top IMNSFHO. I looked up the ASCAP website, found a clause saying there is exemption for worship services- how about we have Thursday Night Jazz Service at xxxxx restaurant. Any ideas??? ...Tired of Being Dicked Around......
2. What is a public performance?
A public performance is one that occurs either in a public place or any place where people gather (other than a small circle of a family or its social acquaintances.) A public performance is also one that is transmitted to the public; for example, radio or television broadcasts, music-on-hold, cable television, and by the internet. Generally, those who publicly perform music obtain permission from the owner of the music or his representative. However, there are a few limited exceptions, (called "exemptions") to this rule. Permission is not required for music played or sung as part of a worship service unless that service is transmitted beyond where it takes place (for example, a radio or television broadcast). Performances as part of face to face teaching activity at a non-profit educational institutions are also exempt.