People love artists like Beyoncé, Marshmello, Britney Spears, Michael Jackson and other huge icons. Unfortunately, not many people recognize the hard-working producers and engineers behind those artists. Sometimes this lack of recognition extends to copyright law, especially when a producer or engineer feels unfairly compensated for their work. But, that problem may be fixed in the US if a new US Senate bill is passed.

The Allocation for Music Producers (AMP) Act has been introduced in the Senate, with support from both Democrats and Republicans. The AMP Act would achieve a few things:

  • Producers and engineers would receive royalty payments directly from SoundExchange—a digital performance rights organization—when their songs are played on satellite radio or online radio such as Pandora.
  • A formal legal process for producers and engineers to collect royalties from SoundExchange rather than  collaborating artists would be established.
  • The establishing of a formal process for producers and engineers who worked on recordings made before 1995 to apply for royalties.
  • The first-ever US copyright law recognition of music producers and engineers.

Previously, another version was introduced before the US House of Representatives. If both versions pass, they will ultimately be consolidated to form a finalized act for President Trump’s final approval. Recording Academy Chief Industry, Government & Member Relations Officer Daryl Friedman said the following about the act:

“The introduction of the Allocation for Music Producers (AMP) Act in the Senate amps up momentum for passing music copyright reform legislation in Congress.”

The AMP Act marks the third part of the US federal government’s push for US copyright law reform for music. The other two acts currently being circulated with their own versions in the Senate and House each are the Music Modernization Act and the CLASSICS Act. The Music Modernization Act attempts to reform licensing and royalty rates and rules for modern music, while the CLASSICS Act reconsiders how royalties are rewarded to artists and rightsholders for recordings made before 1972.


Cover Photo: Philippe Wuyts