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Paperback All You Need to Know About the Music Business Book

ISBN: 0140268065

ISBN13: 9780140268065

All You Need to Know About the Music Business

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Format: Paperback

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Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. "The industry bible" ( Los Angeles Times ), now updated, essential for anyone in the music business--musicians, songwriters, lawyers, agents, promoters, publishers, executives, and managers--trying to...

Customer Reviews

4 ratings


All You Need to Know About the Music Business by Donald S. Passman is by far the best book to read for insight into the pros and the cons of the music business. Passman's knowledge is superior to any other music book that I have had the pleasure of reading. Many authors have released pertinent information about the realities of the business but Passman's approach is not only insightful but it is relaxing as well. His knowledge coupled with his humor, wit and enthusiasm soothes the anxiety of the reader. Instead of the reader being bombarded with only facts and figures, Donald Passman appears to display a more personal address. In reading All You Need to Know About the Music Business, I felt it was more of a close consultation instead of a structured manuscript. This is why this book is so powerful! It is wonderfully structured to assist the aspiring musician to take control of his or her own career. He reveals the dangers & advantages of advances, royalties, cross-collateralization, publishing, merchandising and touring. Passman gives the reader tips on getting the best record deal possible. He teaches us how to protect our passion, production, music and money! I highly recommend that all aspiring songwriters, producers and musicians read this book. Kudos!


I am an artist about to release an album. Even before I started venturing into self-producing my first album along w/ my producer/friend , I was reading this book nite & day & I even lent it to my manager since we're really not that knowledgeable in the business yet. It really is a must for someone to treat the music industry as business or else , if u don't know how to play the game, the ins-outs of this industry - u must read this book or else you're gonna sink. Donald is an industry professional whom I believe wants to share his knowledge to struggling & aspiring artists/musicians/managers/etc. like me. I highly recommend this book to new artists & those who have plans of crossing over the US music industry. Even if I'm a Filipino living in Manila , the knowledge that this book has given me is worth so much.


Author Passman has created something of a journalistic feat: his book is an attorney's look at the mechanisms of the music industry-usually not a particularly fascinating subject-yet he's made it great fun to read. An LA-based music attorney since the seventies, Passman is boyishly enthusiastic about his subject, and says the book is an outgrowth of his professional need to explain the basic workings of the industry to his artist clients. Though he says he is not writing technically (as if for fellow attorneys), he has nevertheless included virtually all of the checkpoints, or "deal points," that come up in contract negotiations today. The point of view being marketed here is that it pays to be an informed artist or songwriter, even if you think you don't care that much about the business side. Passman's "blurbs," or endorsements, are almost overkill: the likes of artist Don Henley, producer Quincy Jones, and longtime Warner Communications Chairman Mo Ostin. In the light of all this prestige (even the publisher, Prentice Hall, is an old-guard New York house), I couldn't believe that beneath Joe Smith's back- cover endorsement, Capitol-EMI, of which Smith was chair, was misspelled as "Capital." Minor flaw, all things considered, and happily not a predictor of sloppy work inside. Passman is an excellent choice for either personal learning or university-level classroom study. On first hearing, the title seems a bit arrogant, but Passman just about does cover it all. The 1994 second edition is virtually identical to the first, except for a welcome expansion of the opening "First Steps" section, and a detailed explanation of legislation the entire music industry lobbied long and hard to achieve: the Audio Home Recording Act of 1992 (the "home taping" legislation). Passman explains the projected flow of revenues from this act back into the music industry: one third to songwriters and publishers, and two thirds to record companies. Among the nineties books on the business of the music industry, this is one of the very best. Ron Simpson, School of Music, Brigham Young University. Author of MASTERING THE MUSIC BUSINESS.

Absolutely the best book in the biz

I am a law school graduate and have worked as a legal officer for a major bank and as a pro musician. This book is very clearly written and is full of essential information that a) You just don't get in most law schools and b) Would cost thousands of dollars in legal fees to get from your own music lawyer IF they had the time to run you through it all (which they don't). This book is now my bible. Also you don't need to be a lawyer to understand it. If you are thinking of getting into the biz in any way, musician, lawyer, manager, producer, indie label, composer etc. you should own this book or the industry will chew you up and spit you out! I can't thank the author enough for giving this material out so generously. It is so well written. I've been seeking this sort of info for years. If you buy only one book on the biz make it this one.
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