MPG and PPL hosted a session to explain the value and importance of the Eligible Studio Producer Form which PPL launched last year.

More than 50 people attended the event, which was hosted by MPG Chairman Steve Levine. The panel consisted of Camilla Waite (PPL Head of Legal & Business Affairs), Penny White (PPL Head of Member Services) and MPG’s Tommy D (producer, artist and label owner, who has worked with artists such as Catatonia, Beyoncé, Jay-Z and KT Tunstall).

The Music Producers Guild and PPL have worked closely together to launch the Eligible Studio Producer Form which, while not introducing a change in policy, was designed to provide evidence of a studio producer’s performance at the time of recording. The form, which was launched in June 2012 and is being trialled for one year, allows all parties to agree, at the point of recording, what contributions have been made on a track. This simple form eases the path for producers to make royalty claims with PPL by providing an elegant and transparent process that clarifies future payments.

Steve Levine, chairman of the Music Producers Guild, says: “As this income is an important revenue stream for recording musicians, record companies and producers, we wanted to ensure that our members understood the process so that they don’t lose out on any potential income. This seminar answered many of their queries and we hope it will give them the confidence to make claims for payments using PPL’s new Eligible Studio Producer Form.”

During the debate Tommy D said he hoped the new form would eventually replace the track sheets that were used historically.  He pointed out that the form’s main benefit was to identify the role the producer had played during the session in order to avoid future royalty disputes. Where a studio producer does not give an audible contribution (such as vocals or instrumentals) they may still be eligible to receive royalties from PPL if they conduct (or provide a similar musical direction) to another performer's live performance as it is being recorded.  The form is designed to be submitted to PPL as evidence in support of these “non-audible” contributions. If producers have also performed audible contributions, such as vocals or playing an instrument, then PPL recommends that studio producers make claims with PPL for each of these roles (if not already included in the data submitted by the record company).

After the panel discussion, which generated some lively debate, attendees were able to access personal advice from PPL‘s member services team who were on hand to help with PPL-related queries.