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Small run CD - Mechanical Collection Mess

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Small run CD - Mechanical Collection Mess

PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2019 4:23 pm
by Mike McLoone
Hello knowledgeable peoples,

I did finally get around to the CD pressing plant ride on this extended tour of the musical amusement park. It's been the best part of twenty years now, of course one does not expect to make a profit entering such an amusement park as the music business, but this last ride has left me a little befuddled.

The details:
Artist (me) based in Germany with no PRO or any such affiliation. Pressed 1000 CDs, filling out the statutory requirement of a GEMA mechanical licensing application. Cost: zero. CD's are pressed up. All seems good.

Artist decides to put said album online through CD Baby, paying extra for the "pro publishing" option. Fills out all paperwork, including registering with IRS(!) in the US for tax. Then is told, should have registered with GEMA.

Artist joins GEMA. Gets a bill for the already pressed CD mechanical licensing, almost 800 euro. Pays GEMA said bill, being told that around 80% of the money would eventually end up being refunded anyhow.

Wait one year for GEMA returns. Artist gets statement to say that 45 Euro will be paid out.

Contacts GEMA who inform artist, some entity called "ST Music Europe Ltd" have pocketed the 75% artists share of the mechanicals. Artist realises this may have something to do with CD Baby publishing. Fires off an email to CD Baby (currently awaiting reply).

Upon some googling, ST Music Europe do indeed look fair shoddy, owners are involved in about five other publishing entities, no website, company listed as inactive.

I guess I'll wait another week for CD Baby to reply, they usually do but it takes a while. If anyone has any other advice on how to proceed, I'll gladly hear it.

Any may I use this opportunity to say THANK YOU to the people who have been willing to share their knowledge and keep this forum the resource that it is. It has been a great road map of the big old amusement park, such that it is.

Best Regards,

Re: Small run CD - Mechanical Collection Mess

PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2019 8:22 am
by Mike McLoone
13 databases later, GEMA have discovered the error on their part and it's "fixed itself"

I didn't even have to fill out a 27b/6. They're nice people, they do mean well and actually answer mails. But freely admit their systems are at least five years behind the times due to several wrong turns in the IT infrastructure.


Re: Small run CD - Mechanical Collection Mess

PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2019 10:34 am
by blinddrew
Thanks for the update Mike, glad you got it sorted.
I think it's fair to say that a lot of the collection agencies are a long way from the cutting edge with their systems and processes...