Copyrights done right

Posted on June 4, 2009 by


In a week from today a new record label will be launching. It is called Re:Sound. It’s a part of The Resurgence which is a theological and ecclesiological organization who’s mission is to make available to all Christians resources for spiritual growth and maturation. They are reformed in their theology and bible based in pretty much everything.


The things that gets me most excited about this new record label are this;

1) New Congregational Music that was written for the church and has strong doctrinal truths in them.

2) The way they are doing copyrights for the music is the way that all worship music should be done.

– They are allowing free sharing and adaption(remixing) of the music (which all churches pretty much do already anyway)

– The only conditions of the use of their material is that you attribute the artist

– This means as a general rule they are waiving the right to collect royalties. This is the part that makes me excited. There has been a general malaise surrounding copyright laws and church music since the internet made it easy to find and print worship songs on your own.  The easiest way to use a lot of worship songs is to buy a CCLI liscense. The point of this is that the artists register with CCLI and collect royalties based on how often their song is being copied/projected. You pay CCLI for the right to project and copy the songs/lyrics and eventually they ask what songs you used that year and then distribute your money accordingly. Resound artists on the otherhand simply waive the right to collect royalties (they still reserve the right to collect if they want to).

I know that might have been more than you wanted to know but I’m really excited about this. I hope that this will be a trend starting in Christian music.  That instead of just letting churches (knowingly or unknowingly) break the law by copying their music, they just intentionally allow them to. Most artists want churches to use their songs to praise God and would never sue. (there was one case of the Arch-diocese of Chicago being sued, that’s the basis for the CCLI being formed, and pretty much the only case of that)

3) Streamlined Projection.  Resound artists only require the that the title of the work and the author of the work be listed as attribution. This means on Sunday the title slide can look like

Hallelujah by John Doe

instead of how CCLI requires that it be displayed

4.2 Church agrees that each reproduced version of a Song will contain the Song title, writer credit(s), and copyright notice in substantially the following form:

“Hallelujah,” words and music by John Doe
© 2000 Good Music Co.
Used By Permission. CCLI License #____________

As a general rule I get around the CCLI requirement by putting that whole fun thing on a bottom corner of the last slide of a song in 8 point font (or anything that is only readable by those with 20/20 vision)

But with resound songs you don’t have to do that at all.

Resound has released a sample EP of 8 songs, with chord sheets, in anticipation of the launch. I have listened to them all and they are generally good songs. Some are downright Great. (I got goosebumps and it’s 70 out). And they have great content. Some of the styles are not going to work so well for all churches. But you can take the words, structure, and music, and adjust it to fit your church (something I think we should be considering with most of our music anyway)

And so i am eagerly awaiting the upcoming Launch of Resound, and anticipating great things from them in the future.

Posted in: Praxis