Ian, just a quick question. I always wondered if radio stations have to pay royalties on bumper music in general. If so, Is it a play by play basis they have to pay them, or is it just a one time fee for it?
I don't know if talk stations pay royalties.
I know this is old, but I just ran across it and know the answer. Talk radio stations have begun getting shaken down the past few years by performing rights orgs ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC. Talk stations have to pay regardless of whether they have ANY music on their stations or not. They have to pay even if they pay someone to make all their music. They have to pay even if they pay even if they write and record the music themselves. They have to pay even if they pay even if they pay someone for royalty-free music.
These organizations are like unions...they start out of a basic good reason (to help workers get paid for their work), and like unions, end up acting like the mafia, but a mafia backed by the government gun.
And I can tell you from my experience in the music biz, in a band that was on a major lable, was a BMI member, that performing rights orgs really don't have any sort of equitable math to figure out who gets paid what. Big artists get paid the lion's share disproportionate even to what they have played where. For instance, Megadeth probably gets a few dozen dollars a year for Ian using their music on talk radio, but some of the lesser known bands probably get nothing for it, even if they're a member of one of those performing rights orgs.
I've talked to a number of program directors about the performing rights orgs, and they hate it. Big station cartels like it, because they can pay it. Small mom-and-pop stations hate it. It's relatively new on talk radio, and it's just one more example of government thug-guns hurting small businesses.