When it comes to working with artists, companies or anyone as a business, YOU the artists (or producer) need to get everything in writing. Never leave any agreements to trust or simply verbal in nature. When people need you, or want a service from you as part of their master-plan, they will tell you anything to appease you. Once the money arrives and they meet their goals in the industry they WILL get amnesia. They WILL forget your agreement conveniently. The music business is no different from any other business. As artists we are sometimes naïve to this fact. We want to believe the music industry types we meet are friends and genuinely good people with a starving artist's heart and sense of morality...
NEVER ASSUME ANYTHING.
If you were opening up a McDonald's franchise in your town and dealing with McDonald's corporate office, do you think they would be cool with exchanging millions in assets and resources based on a verbal agreement or "we all go eat when I get on dog!"? Not in a million years on a cold day in hell would a corporation or real business operate like that.
Take your music seriously and make a contract for everything you do or make the client provide one and have someone look over it for you...
If you can't afford a lawyer or have no one to turn to I don't care if you hit me up and bother me for help, It's cool. I have seen too many artists screwed over and pockets ran through. But please believe this isn't just unsigned artists that go through this. I got homies with publishing deals right now, producing hits that are dead broke living off advances and credit cards because what?
THEY DIDN'T GET IT IN WRITING!
Look at the music business as no different than wall street, oil companies, and any other shark-infested corporate environment. It's YOUR money potentially at stake. Be Easy!
About Joey Cutless
Joey Cutless is a Music Producer, Composer & Engineer that has been a pioneer in online beat sales, TV licensing, and marketing of all things production related for over 15 years.