Our Music team has substantial expertise in advising clients in the music industry. We advise artists, song-writers and producers on all aspects of their careers, and industry executives on their executive packages. We also work closely with labels, publishers and international music companies on their commercial and corporate activities.

Our team has substantial industry experience and provides practical and cutting edge legal advice on all areas that impact those in the music business.

We also have a specialist music litigation team who can advise on infringement claims, recover royalties or deal with highly sensitive reputation management issues.

What we do

  • Recording Artists

    We advise a wide variety of recording artists, from emerging talent to stadium acts and across all musical genres. These regularly include the following, all of which will be structured and negotiated to fit a particular artist’s needs:

    • Recording Agreements
    • Publishing/Song writing Agreements
    • Management Agreements
    • Merchandise Agreements
    • Touring Agreements
    • Agreements with Third Party Producers/Mixers/Featured Artists
    • Sponsorship & Endorsement Agreements
    • Band Partnership Agreements
  • Songwriters

    We advise songwriters on their particular needs which are often different to those of the recording artist. Our songwriter clients range from new writers finding their way to some of the most globally successful in the industry. We also regularly advise on catalogue sales and restructures.

  • Producers/Mixers

    We represent a variety of producers and mixers in respect of both their producer/mixer services and their song writing services, where relevant. We also provide advice in respect of the corporate organisation and commercial structuring for production companies – something a number of producers are now looking to operate.

  • Managers

    We represent many highly successful music managers and their business operations – from independent managers to large management companies. The needs of each of our clients are individual and specific and sometimes overlap with other business models. We structure every arrangement bespoke to match the particular needs of the relevant client.

  • Executives

    We work hand in hand with our Employment team to represent music industry executives in respect of their employment and consultancy arrangements. Our clients range from junior A&R managers making their first waves in the industry to senior management at major record companies and publishers, and in each case we help to guide them on their negotiations with their current employers and/or prospective employers, as well as providing valuable insight on career progression within the music and wider creative industries.

  • Business Clients

    We advise a wide variety of business clients – in particular independent record labels and publishers – with respect to their corporate and commercial activities throughout the music and wider entertainment industries. Depending upon the particular client’s activities these regularly include:

    • Recording and Production Agreements
    • Publishing and Sub-Publishing Agreements
    • Management Agreements
    • Manufacturing & Distribution Agreements
    • Preparing for acquisitions and potential sale (and advising throughout any resulting transaction)
    • Internal corporate structuring
    • Employment advice

    We also provide a day to day business affairs service to some of the most successful independent labels and publishers, dealing with all their legal and business affairs needs.

  • Music Litigation

    We have specialist expertise in advising clients in the music industry on dealing with disputes, enforcing their rights in the courts and recovering sums due to them.

    These range from pursuing those who infringe an artist’s or a songwriter’s rights, or refuse to pay royalties, to taking action against counterfeiters or handling disputes between band members (or ex-band members).

    We have industry knowledge and a strong international network of lawyers in other jurisdictions with whom we work closely on international claims.

  • Testimonials

    “They are engaging, approachable and determined.” Chambers & Partners, 2020 

    “SMB have been among the very best we’ve worked with, not least because they try to work with the author to bring their words through, rather than needlessly overcomplicating matters.”  Chambers & Partners, 2020

  • They cut to the heart of the commercial essence of the deal and are creative in their structuring, problem-solving and deal-making.