Are One Hit Wonders Able To Live Off Of Royalties?

By Divya G

The Knack is a New Wave rock band that is famous for their 1979 song ‘My Sharona.’ When it was an unknown band, this breakout hit turned them into a massive success in no time. They ruled the Billboard Hot 100 for at one point nearly six months at a stretch. Apart from that, they successfully sold 500,000 copies of the record in 13 days; an excellent achievement indeed.

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However, are today’s artists capable of striking it rich with one hit and living off royalties? Do the musicians and songwriters receive enough wages from royalties alone? According to Jason Feehan and Randy Chertkow, the world of music is nothing but a heavily regulated industry. If you think that being the lead singer will open the doors for plenty of opportunities, you are certainly under the wrong impression. Even if you release a hit, you might not bring home a significant amount of money at the end of the day.

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The sound composition and recording are the two types of copyright for each and every song. These copyrights pay various royalties; however, the artist or singer is often placed at the end position in the payout chain. 

Let’s begin with sound recording. Every time a particular song is downloaded, streamed, or sold in the record, CD, or tape format, the rights holder, related to songwriting, enjoys the payment. 

On the other hand, if you write a song and establish yourself as a songwriter, you will be able to collect serious royalties. But first, you need to divide it among the right holders, record labels, and publishers.