This is the continuing saga of getting permission to print in my book a few lines of song lyric from each of 4 songs. It's not enough to print the names of the writers, since I will be charging money for my book.
I knew going in that the hard part would be finding who has the rights to sign permission. One song can have multiple collaborators who are members of different unions, have different managers.
I used this site as a reference www.copyrightkids.org/permissioninformation.htm and I used their sample for my model letter.
If I don't get permission, or they want too much money for permission, I'll just remove the lines from the book.
On August 23, I sent off nine letters to cover 4 songs. I included my phone number, email address, and a SASE so they can choose their communication medium. I've gotten phone calls and mail, saying I need to contact a different person. I got an email from Richard Marks' attorney, saying that I should get permission from Luther Vandross' people first since Marks owns only 25% of the rights to "Dance with my Father."
Then I got 3 emails from one person referencing 3 songs (including Dance with My Father) whose rights are managed by the Hal Leonard Corporation. The guts of the email says this:
This is in response to your request concerning permission to reprint the lyrics of our copyrighted composition(s) listed above. The request has been sent to our print agent, Hal Leonard Corporation for further processing.
In order to grant you permission for this use, Hal Leonard will first need to receive ALL of the following information:
-Title of publication
-Retail Selling Price
-Unit size of printing
-Territory and language(s) of distribution
-A brief summary of the content of publication
-Galley sheet(s) or manuscript page(s) on which lyric appears.
Anything you have sent to EMI has been forwarded to Hal Leonard Corp. If any of the above items were missing, please send them directly to Hal Leonard Corp.
OK, I have assembled that stuff to mail tomorrow. If anybody wants more than a symbolic amount of money ($1) for the rights, I'll back off. Meanwhile, I'll hang in there.