Who is responsible for paying music licensing fees?

In short, the business owner is responsible for paying music licensing fees.

Since the business ultimately controls what performances occur on its premises, the business is typically responsible for obtaining public performance authorization. This is a cost of doing business when using music to enhance the atmosphere or entertain patrons. And no, a business cannot shift its responsibility to musicians or entertainers. The business is responsible for performances by musicians or entertainers just as it would be for music coming from a CD, TV, digital music file, or other source.

By obtaining a SESAC Performance License, you get blanket authorization to play any music in the vast SESAC repertory, letting you focus more on your business and less on compliance.

What kind of businesses need a SESAC performance license? 
If music being performed anywhere on your premises, then your business likely needs a SESAC Performance License. This could include music on televisions, radios, streaming devices as well as any live music, karaoke, DJs, and more.

No matter what kind of business you own or operate, a SESAC Performance License covers your business to publicly perform any of the songs in the SESAC repertory.

We understand that your business may have unique considerations. A family-owned restaurant is not the same as a radio station. A fitness studio is different from an outdoor music festival.  The SESAC Performance License and related music licensing fees take this into consideration.

Some examples of different industry licenses include restaurants, taverns, nightclubs, hotels, motels, health clubs, music on hold, bowling alleys, roller and ice skating centers, colleges and universities, professional sports teams, shopping centers and malls, retail stores, dance studios, concert promoters, stadiums and convention centers, airports, corporate offices, TV and radio stations, websites, streaming platforms, and many others. 

Remember, waiting to ask for forgiveness means you may have committed copyright infringement. We’re here to help you avoid that. A SESAC Performance License for your business is just a few clicks away.  Simple and convenient blanket authorization.  Obtain a license online today at SESAC: Get a License, or schedule a consultation with a SESAC representative.

Do health clubs, fitness centers, or dance and yoga studios need a SESAC license?

Short answer, YES!  Health clubs, fitness centers, dance and yoga studios and other fitness, health, and wellness group and class-based businesses have just as much a need for a SESAC Performance License as any other business using music.  Music plays a critical role in these businesses as it sets the tone and mood for the participants, and requires. The minute the music is heard, a public performance has occurred requiring the business to have authorization. Obtain a license online today at SESAC: Get a License, or schedule a consultation with a SESAC representative to discuss music licensing fees.

What about Apartments, Condominiums, and Senior Living Facilities?

Condominiums, apartments, senior living facilities, and nursing homes often have communal areas for residents that host music performances. Some examples include special holiday events, live music, DJs/dance parties, karaoke, pool parties and more. Additionally, many have game rooms and lounges which often have TVs playing shows and streaming programming. Many businesses don’t realize that music on a TV show or music in a commercial may be written by SESAC composers and musicians and could require a SESAC Performance License when played in a common area. Considering the many uses of music for residents, members and their guests, these businesses often need the blanket authorization granted by the SESAC Performance License. Obtain a license online today at SESAC: Get a License, or schedule a consultation with a SESAC representative.

What about Using Music on Websites, Apps and Games What License Do I Need?

Music plays a vital role for many online businesses.  Apps and games are increasingly including live or on-demand content in addition to background or theme music.  Streaming audio, music videos, and song clips are just some examples of what users are encountering on mobile applications and games.  Obtaining blanket authorization through a SESAC Performance License is a valuable part of your compliance strategy if you are a business operating in the evolving digital space.  Obtain a license online today at SESAC: Get a License, or schedule a consultation with a SESAC representative.


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