asker

darkoneelder asked: I noticed you did a orchestra version of Skyfall and it's now a James Bond intro, so why not do one with all the intros for the James Bond movies?

Because if I did an intro for all 23 Bond films then that requires 23 different licenses (one for each film, assuming they’re all different themes). It’s the exact reason why Homestuck Cascade is an issue - multiple licenses/songwriters/etc is a very difficult thing to pull off for just one person.

In addition, I have to pay 9.1 cents per license - so if I made a song with all the Bond intros, I would have to pay $2.03 in royalties (9.1 cents x 23). I only make 0.45 cents per $1 song (iTunes keeps 30 cents, royalties, etc). So after it’s all said and done I would actually lose about $1.50 per sale.

Set up as a loss-leader where I can make the difference up on touring or t-shirts is one thing, but I can’t tour because orchestras only play music by dead composers, and I can’t afford t-shirts yet.

Another option is to do it non-commercially and have as much fun as I want mashing everything together, but non-commercial would mean this would become a hobby instead of a career to me, so the quality and frequency of the pieces would be non existent. I’d only have 1 hour per night to write music after I came home from my construction job.

These pieces, as you can probably tell, are massive (I don’t release crappy content or cut corners when it comes to my work for you guys). It’s not the most efficient way to run a weekly schedule (a simple guitar song would perhaps be easier), but orchestra is my passion, and this idea is important to me. I also answer every email, make every cover album, take song polls, license each piece, etc. And I try my best to release a song per week. Rinse, repeat.

It’s an insane week. To give you a scope of how busy I’ve been with For Orchestra - I’ve released 140 high-quality arrangements of songs since I started, which is almost 1/3 of the entire catalogue that The Rolling Stones released in their 50 year career.

So that’s why I can’t mash things up as much as I would like - it’s because the licensing would make this financially unstable, and deter my goal of keeping this orchestra music going. In the case of Madeon ‘Pop Culture’ it’s a Transformative piece, meaning that it stems so far from the originals that it’s its own copyright (in my opinion). So I didn’t have to pay for 39 licenses.

Unlike other mashups, if you listen to my Madeon orchestra cover you wouldn’t say “wow this sounds just like Black Eyed Peas ‘Gotta Feeling’”. That’s because there’s no part in that song that is objectively “revealed”, so the 39 songs + the orchestration which stripped out the words and remixed Madeon’s remix, becomes sort of a new song completely separate from the 39 that were used. Which is why I I was so excited to tackle it.

  1. dinkiedoo said: Great answer Walt…the economics of today music industry are wild. People don’t realize the effect of all this “free” music on those trying to earn a living. I applaud your efforts and persistence. Love the hobby, construction job analogy! Peace!
  2. fororchestra posted this
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