The Allocation for Music Producers (AMP) Act was recently introduced in the Senate. If signed into law, this bill will create a way for producers and engineers to receive direct payments from SoundExchange instead of relying on the artists to fulfill their contractual obligations for payment.
The industry has always been plagued by complaints of delayed payments. Unfortunately, artists commonly suffer delays in payment for a stream or a download of their song for over a year. If it takes this long for Spotify to get money to a label and then a label to pay its artists, how much longer will it take an artist to get money to their producers and engineers?
Now, the industry has already come up with a solution to this problem in the form of Letters of Direction (LODs), where the artist directed SoundExchange to pay a producer directly. But producers were dependent on artists to voluntarily fill out the right paperwork and submit it. The AMP Act codifies into law this long-standing industry practice and makes it the norm of all artist-producer relationships.
The bill is part of several music and copyright-related bills, sometimes being referred to as a “music-bus” bill, which consists of the CLASSICS Act, the Music Modernization Act, and the AMP Act. These bills enjoy industry and bipartisan support generally and are expected to pass.
Dallin Earl is an Entertainment Highlight Contributor for the Harvard Journal of Sports and Entertainment Law and a current first-year student at Harvard Law School (Class of 2020).