How many seconds of a song can I sample without a license

Discussion in 'Industry News' started by Luka, May 10, 2018.

  1. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Audiosexual

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    They have never been legitimate. If they were, nobody would have ever been sued / litigated. So that perspective falls down badly. if they make theft legitimate then you'd be correct but they haven't so it is culturally offensive except for people who do not know the difference between honest writing and zero-integrity writing.

    A musician taught to perform and write on an instrument without a computer is more likely to create something unique musicially, while a sample/sequencing based writer will be audiophonic.

    When a musician starts, for the first 5-10 years they will have a few favorites on their chosen instrument. Maybe even ten or more. When two or more decades go by, they will have thousands of influences as they develop their REAL musical skills, so they develop their own identity as a culmination of everything they have listened to over a long period of time, mixed in with their persona. If they are a really good musician, they play who they are as a person. They have been influenced. They have literally ceased 'borrowing' as you put it. They are not quoting in other words any longer.

    While possibly an inverted retrograde phrase or part of a line may come out in an improvisation, it is not borrowing, it is an approach via influence not direct stealing. On a computer, the only possibility is in the way they program it. Pretty fucking cold and soulless really to do it the latter way. Also very shitty to use someone else's work directly and call it one's own. Pharrel Williams and Robin Thicke got sued for that not so long ago by Marvin Gaye's estate.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2022
  2. kingchubby

    kingchubby Rock Star

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    You are so wrong. Sorry.
    Plenty of legitimate and great artists who’ve done sampling as part of their repertoire without getting sued.
     
  3. No Avenger

    No Avenger Moderator Staff Member

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    Not quite. Some copyright holder may not care, but not being sued doesn't mean you're not doing something illegal, right? Right.
     
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  4. vladimir guerrero

    vladimir guerrero Kapellmeister

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    Hmmm, I taste notes of elitism, classism, deranged obsessions with individualism and purity. Mouthfeel has them spitting mad, with a bitter and sour aftertouch.
     
  5. vladimir guerrero

    vladimir guerrero Kapellmeister

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    We might be equivocating on the word "legitimate."

    edit: and some here are clearly using both definitions simultaneously.
     
  6. kingchubby

    kingchubby Rock Star

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    You are stating a completely different point than mine.

    Examples: The Art Of Noise, New Order (Blue Monday samples Kraftwerk *and*Sylvester, and that's just one of their tracks), Ministry (The Land of Rape and Honey is chock-full of samples). Big Audio Dynamite (Mick Jones' band post The Clash. Their first record is a cornucopia of samples). Plenty of stuff out there.

    I would agree to clear the sample to avoid any issues, but that sampling is not a legitimate way of making music? Hogwash!

    Also, it also depends on what you sample and how you do the sampling. Of course, if you are willing to do the crime, be willing to do the time and pay the fine.

    Spoken on Cartman's voice. lol.
     
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  7. 9ty

    9ty Kapellmeister

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    It's the same old discussion. Let me put it this way: my 14-years old me was partly what we used to call a "music nazi" where I come from. I was thinking (maybe I wasn't even "thinking" but I was "telling" others): Punk and Metal is real music, played by real musicians, hip hop artists are just some random guys who can't even play an instrument and are not able to sing. Oh man, how wrong was I. And I'm very glad, I was able to get over this ridiculous and elitist opinion quite soon afterwards. Today I'm totally free to like what I think sounds good or what does give me something even if it sounds bad. It is really not a matter of "who had this idea first" or "who can play an real instrument" (what is a real instrument anyway?).

    What makes a punk band per se more cultural legit? Most of them are playing the same powerchords everybody does. Even the same progressions. With a very similar (because much distorted) sound.

    I think as a teenager I was that kind of "music nazi" because I wanted to distinct from others. I wanted to be part of something, so I demonized what I thought was the opposite. Nowadays I think, there is even a fair amount overlapping between punk and hip hop.
     
  8. kingchubby

    kingchubby Rock Star

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    Gatekeeping is the best and sure fire way to keep things stagnant.

    Hard pass.
     
  9. clone

    clone Audiosexual

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    Long Story Long:

    I love sample based music and always have. The problem is only if you care to release the song, ever. ever, ever, ever.

    It's why I no longer use them at all, if possible. I like to use them and then delete them, because you can get a nice little groove going.
    Then, if I really like the sample as it is; I will still recreate it. Chord Progressions can not be copywrite/IP. Melodies can. Anything recorded can. So, the easiest way to deal with the stuff is delete all of it ASAP within the project. Replace it, or Remake it. If you do need to reverse engineer a synthesizer patch, check out Fred Welsh - Synthesizer Cookbook; he more than adequately covers how to Reverse a synth patch using subtractive synthesis and Freak(O)scope. It's like 30 bucks, and it's a great resource to keep a hard copy of. You can find it as pdf from scene, but I really like having the hard copy of it and recommend it to anyone from intro to advanced users alike. It is badass.


    [​IMG]


    Another thing about doing this that I may add, the best thing that can happen is you begin replacing the sound/sample; and you cannot get it
    as an exactly correct reproduction. That's where you stop following the tutorial or guide you use for the starting patch, and then twist it up even more.

    Samples suck anymore. Because there are so so many of them, not because they are bad. But because the last thing I want to hear is some dickhead trying to take any piece of credit from my own work. Like some 1 sample is an entire track. Let them go brag about someone else's work and delete them. If someone would like you to produce a tune with their samples as a demo of them, or a product VST,etc; that is the ideal situation. Read: That shit never really happens anyway.
     
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  10. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Audiosexual

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    I taste notes of limited experience as a real musician, potential like of exploitation and inability to know how the music industry was originally designed to work with zero knowledge of copyright. That pretty much spells out most electronic musicians who were born after 1990. No bitterness, just disappointment at the bottom feeding depths the industry has sunk to. It's normal I suppose that if nobody has lived in a time when it is different, they would not know what it is like to gig 365 days of the year and make a living from it, and everyone I knew and still know, did. So I guess anyone who did not would think of someone who did as elitist. Perhaps I am based on that but if so, a grateful one and piteous of most people who will never know what they lost. Look up how many plays worldwide in a year that a person needs to make their country's average national wage. TRAGIC.

    This statement in itself says that people know they are stealing. Perhaps you are right though it is a suspect illicit way.
    I should have said zero integrity as a writer because a writer with integrity would refuse to steal someone else's work knowledgably. Your statement indicates knowing they're doing it. It's theft then. As @NoAvenger was indicating, just because someone can steal something and get away with it, or get sued when they did nothing wrong, does not mean it's right. That's what i got from it anyway, as stated below.
    (See paragraph directly above)
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2022
  11. vladimir guerrero

    vladimir guerrero Kapellmeister

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    Oh I completely agree with you about the miserable situation the industry has pushed gigging musicians into. It's very unfortunate and the art suffers overall. But there are so many factors that feed into this, and I don't see how tasteful/respectful/creative sampling is much of a driving force, except that electronic musicians are growing in proportion and their projects tend not to employ many (or any) other musicians. But that's largely the nature of the genres, and for many people, it's only viable for them to do small electronic projects given their financial means.

    I'd blame streaming way before I blamed sampling. Hell, now it's probably COVID doing as much damage to the working musician as anything. I also thought we were talking about the act of sampling itself, and not so much the related economic issues. I feel for the pros who are losing their livelihoods, but I won't blame the kids making drum and bass.
     
  12. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Audiosexual

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    It seems I completely misread you before and for that I apologize. I am used to people who do not show the level of understanding laterally that you just did. Too easy to do when reading forum posts so that's on me. I do not blame the kids making EDM tracks in any way. They have birthed into an industry that is completely computer and sample driven by 21 year old producers professing to know as much as 40 year industry platinum record selling producers.

    It is a combination of many things. The selfie age of 'look at me" that inadvertently professed 15 minutes of fame for anyone with a tune that was half-decent. Add to this, the royalty collection agencies bending over to the Spotify, Pandora and streaming services instead of taking them to court for copyright theft. Add to this apathy from many sources and it's probably not even an industry anymore.

    So nobody should be surprised that people using samples of other people's work get away with it as many author/composers possibly cannot be bothered with the rigmarole and dramas involved in litigating anyone. It does not mean it is right, but with computer, sampling, DAW and software accessibility these days coupled with free "How-to's" on YouTube, it is now a near invulnerable steam train that would take a miracle to stop. It should stop in longevity because otherwise, it says it is fine to steal anyone's work and truly, it is not ok. It will eventually kill off the more despondent and less determined writers. Eventually if it becomes too prevalent, it will be risking the potential for anyone bothering to consider writing anything new.

    It is sad and as I mentioned, more sad for the current and future generations who will never know the joy of what it is like to have the CHOICE to be a performing musician for a living. This is because that choice has now been removed.
    You cannot blame any composer if it gets out of hand for saying "Fuck it, no more. My tunes will only be stolen anyway." Lets hope it never does.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2022
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  13. EddieXx

    EddieXx Audiosexual

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    ive never cared for using any samples because i dont want to even bother with any future problems. and i actually dont even feel its my track with any sort of loops or samples even, i want to make my tracks from the bottom up. i guess drums are sampled anyhow but since they are stock sounds i dont really count that though

    but, i was wondering if there has been any cases with legal problems for sampling drum hits or single shots that are not very recognizable. i was thinking of adding some spice by doing this the other day
     
  14. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Audiosexual

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    If you are either manually playing the parts in inventing your own groove/swing/feel, or programming them.... honestly, it's a single 'one-shot' you are creatively manipulating. if you are cloning someone else's work using the exact same sounds, then that's different. If you took four bars and sampled someone else's drum pattern.... well, it's pretty obvious it belongs to someone else, no matter how different every other part may or may not be.
     
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  15. Bllyboy

    Bllyboy Member

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    If you don't want problems, don't sample .01 second without legal clearance. That simple. However, the chances of you sampling something, f***ing with it production wise, the track gaining enough traction where it gets noticed and you then get brought to court are almost 0% so do it anyway. If the track is enough of a hit to end up in a courtroom the money will be there to settle up with the legal owners and you'll have got tons of free publicity. That's genuinely what we got thought in the music business module of production course I did.
     
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  16. The Pirate

    The Pirate Audiosexual

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    There has been, however, courts apply what is known as de minimis exception to claims alleging infringement of a sound recording. To be clear, a use is de minimis only if the average audience would not recognize the appropriation. One of the most recent cases dealing with this is the one involving Salsoul Records vs. Madonna. It is a must read.

    If we really want to get technical, it does not matter whether it is one single hit, shot, stab, whatever, or 4 bars. As explained above, that is not how the courts look at it. Part of what you wrote it is not how it works. Even if he is manually playing the parts inventing his own groove, if the one shot does not pass the de minimis test, he is liable. It comes down to whether the average audience would recognize the appropriation of the one shot.
     
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  17. BaSsDuDe

    BaSsDuDe Audiosexual

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    I'd agree with that in a legal arena wholeheartedly,. On a creative level notsomuch. The owner is the owner, agreed though.
    Theoretically, Superior and all the drum libraries in Kontakt, XLN etc, are sampling someone else hitting. While this is legally different because they are being paid by the library owner(s), it has aided 'some' people into thinking they can too; without fully understanding the legal ownership factors. Yes, theft is theft is theft. This said, if the person is truly creative, the one-shot shouldn't sound anything like the original by the time they have finished with it.
    So unless the creator says outright "I sampled John Doe's snare snap" and it does not sound anything like it, then most people won't know. It's not right but it happens.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2022
  18. 9ty

    9ty Kapellmeister

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    Even for above average audience it is very difficult to recognize the appropriation of one shots, especially drums. My guess is: it is harder to find/sample drum shots that are so unique, everybody will notice, than the other way round. Even if you'd here the sampled drum shots "naked", without a new context. If someone sees differently, please show me your example of sampling drum shots and let the people guess where those shots were taken from.

    Yeah and theoretically, these "someones" are hitting on drums which were produced/manufactured by someone else, recorded with mics someone else produced, recorded on HD's probably some children in Taiwan had to produce to get something to eat every day.

    What are we talking about here? About exploitation? Cultural appropriation? Stealing? Creative inabilities?
    To me it is very difficult to draw a line between good and bad here. For example: there are many people sampling, which own a very large vinyl/cd library... which means, they probably supported many artists. Thinking further, they may have attented to many concerts in their life. Perhaps they told some friends, "hey bro, I sampled this from Sun Ra, check him out, he was a genius." ... okay wait, Sun Ra already died in 1993. Can we legally steal from dead people?
     
  19. illinoise

    illinoise Guest

    Sampling everyone is doing it just like everyone record their own samples sampling drums hats snares and other drum sound is also stealing You have to record them yourself otherwise you are not an artist bullshit and then we won't talk about kontakt libarys and synth presets
    How many tracks are based on samples it's how you use the samples
     
  20. The Pirate

    The Pirate Audiosexual

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    In that case, unless your case is within the Sixth Circuit you are in the clear. There the rule is: get a license or do not sample.
     
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