Home Forums The DJ Booth Where do you legally get your tracks?

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  • #2042261
    Shaun Pearcey
    Participant

    Hi Guys,

    I’ve been djing live for a year and have been purchasing tracks from all over the place.

    I use the big ones Mastermix and DMC for my music, but have seen that certain people use iTunes and places like Beatport, Amazon and others for there tunes.

    Are we allowed to play out tracks we have purchased from sources such as iTunes and Beatport? I was under the impression they were for personal use only and it was illegal to use them in a commercial setting? Please give me your thoughts to this debate as I know plenty of DJ’s that use iTunes, Beatport, JunoDownload, Traxsource, TrackitDown and all sorts for there source of tracks.

    All comments are appreciated, lets see what you guys think!

    Thanks for your time peeps,

    DJ Shaun Pearcey

    #2042279
    Silvercue Master
    Participant

    I don’t think it makes any difference where you buy the track from in terms of copyright. Copyright is a little grey area sometimes too….just talk to Soundcloud about it!

    I started my digital experience using DJTunes, but then moved to Beatport as I preferred the way they categorised their music. I have tried Amazon and actually find they are generally cheaper, but their website is far less DJ friendly IMHO and unless I already have tracks in mind I don’t use it. Whereas Beatport is easy to “browse and listen” before buying.

    Having said all that I would like to find somewhere new to get tunes. I mainly play Progressive House, House, Electro House, but also love breakbeat and deep house.

    The reason is I think Beatport seems to be focussing more and more on (what I would call) commercicalised, more “poppy” music maybe popular “EDM” in the States and badging it as Progressive House etc. Well, in my experience browsing their top 100 or some genres I like brings up far, far less decent tunes than it did 1 year ago and far more pop influenced tracks with loads of soppy vocals IMHO! They also seem to have less good quality stuff there at the moment and a few labels seem to be dominating. Just MHO of course

    So…suggestions welcomed by me too.

    #2042284
    Shaun Pearcey
    Participant

    Thanks for commenting Silvercue!

    In my eyes if you purchase that track it shouldn’t matter where you have brought it from you should be able to use it but after several conversations with DJ’s I know they mention a lot about copyright being a dodgy aspect.

    I may well use Beatport as its an essential source of tunes for my house collection and really gives me an edge over others when I throw a curveball house track they aren’t expecting in the mix!

    If your looking for alternative websites, check out Traxsource, Trackitdown, JunoDownloads, Bigtunesmp3 are all good for different sub-genres within House.

    Hope this helps mate!

    DJ Shaun Pearcey

    #2042287
    Silvercue Master
    Participant

    Yes I will check them out thanks Shaun. Do you have a view as to which are better/worse and in particular easy to browse and buy if you don;t have anything specific in mind (this is key feature for me when buying tunes).

    #2042303
    Shaun Pearcey
    Participant

    I just use them mate, if I can preview the track before buying this is plus then I add them to my cart on whatever site. As long as I can search in some detail to what I want that’s all that matters to me really.. Obviously some sites are more expensive than others, sometimes because they are exclusive to those sites and you can’t get those tracks anywhere else!

    #2042309
    Terry_42
    Keymaster

    First off: Yes I buy most of my tunes from iTunes.

    However there is no grey area as silvercue describes.

    It is clear that by purchasing in the iTunes store I purchase songs for personal use and not to play the publicly.
    This is why the venue owner, event manager, bar owner… whoever hires you (in 90% of the worlds countries) has to pay an extra “tax” to the copyright protection association of your country (GEMA in germany, AKM in Austria, ADAMI in France, SIAE in Italy, DAMA in spain,…).
    So buy purchasing this license the hiring party enables you to play your legally purchased music to play in front of an audience. It does not legitimise illegally downloaded tracks, so you still need to have every track purchased legally and controls do happen from time to time. So in essence this license expands your own license to play these tracks privately.

    Now as I said in 90% of the countries world wide this is the issue of the venue owner or hiring party and not the DJ (however I still have it as a clause in my DJ contracts), so if you play at a venue it should not be your problem to pay this.
    I do not know the countries where it is the other way around just yet, but I am sure you can google it.

    #2042313
    Silvercue Master
    Participant

    My comments about grey areas where more about using services such as Soundcloud terry. I had a protracted debate with them myself.

    #2042318
    Terry_42
    Keymaster

    Also there is no grey, it is illegal to upload music there that you have no public rights too, the debate is just if it is your fault to not delete any such content or soundclouds…

    The only one with a license for it currently is mixcloud.

    #2042341
    Silvercue Master
    Participant

    Sorry Terry, I don’t entirely agree. It is against their Terms and conditions and they put that on a page about legal questions. However, the actual legality is a grey area if you play small clips of tracks, especially in some countries, if no profit is being made. This was clearly communicated to me in my challenge with them and is in fact stated on this very website on more than one article.

    #2042497
    Terry_42
    Keymaster

    You are correct if the clip length is below 20 seconds, but that is rarely the case with mixes. Unless you do one of those 100 songs in 5 minutes thing. (20 seconds is the safe area in some countries it might go up to even 60 seconds, but that is rare.)

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 11 months ago by Terry_42.
    #2042516
    Silvercue Master
    Participant

    Maybe we should give shaun his thread back 🙂

    Apologies for the diversion. Terry_42, you’re a top guy, let’s leave it there 🙂

    #2042518
    Silvercue Master
    Participant

    Shaun – thanks for those sites.

    I really liked Traxsource, could not get the audio to work on Trackitdown, and was not too keen on the websites for JunoDownloads & Bigtunesmp3

    Traxsource looks like it could become my first go-to site for tracks though and I will definitely spend some time there.

    #2042539
    Shaun Pearcey
    Participant

    Feel free to debate on here its why I set the thread up in the first place aha!

    Traxsource is very good, so I can buy off Beatport then Terry?

    Also is there any licenses we as DJ’s need to invest in for club/bar work? I heard we may need some for Mobile work…

    Thanks again for your time,

    DJ Shaun Pearcey

    #2042616
    padovarsc
    Participant

    Hi

    I buy from Bandcamp, Beatport and sometimes from Juno Download and Traxsource. I dont buy from Amazon or Itunes for the simple reason that I want to buy tracks in the best possible quality, either in WAV (which I then convert to AIFF) or AIFF. I use vinyl and timecode and the reason for deciding to go ‘part’ digital was cost. Often I might here a 12″ single or EP where I only like one of the tracks. Or, as had happened in recent years, the single is released as a limited edition and if you miss it you have to pay extortionate prices on discogs.

    There are no decent record stores where I am so with shipping the average vinyl single costs £10 which is a bit much for one track. However if I can find that single track as a legit digital download I am happy to pay the extra to have an uncompressed file. It’s still a saving of £6 or £7!

    Cheers
    G

    #2042702
    Terry_42
    Keymaster

    No you do not need a DJ license for mobile DJing.
    The same law applies. The hiring party (wedding couple, manager, wedding planner,…) has to get a license to play music from the rights collecting society of your country.
    In most countries there are 2 exceptions to this rule:
    1. A charity event: In this case in most countries you do not need ANY license, but you still need to tell them that you are doing the event (in some countries you get a ZERO invoice)
    2. A closed private event: You are playing for a small number of people who are all personally knows by the hiring party in a private environment (for example their home) where nothing is sold (aka nobody pays for anything). In this case nobody has to know or license anything

    Now while in most countries this is the law, I still recommend to anyone to make a clause in their DJ contract where it specifically states that you are not reliable for the license to play your music publicly. I have it in all my contracts, be it mobile work up to festivals and clubs and it was never a point of discussion as I am simply citing the law.
    I also tell them that off the bat when we review the contract with the hiring party with a small joke like “I know it is the law, but you know I have to deal with newbies too, I am sure you are aware of this anyhow…” this way even if they do not know about it, they take it as fact, as otherwise they would look bad hehe

    And sure I buy from Beatport too, but mostly iTunes as in most cases beatport is way more expensive and in my opinion the quality of iTunes is enough. (I have played it on festivals for thousands of people, so I guess I am good with that quality….)

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 11 months ago by Terry_42.
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