CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE
The Music Producers Guild has enlisted the help of the industry’s best known and most respected recording producers, to highlight the need for accurate crediting information on digital music.
Despite the technological advancements in music over the decades, a decline in crediting the players and artists has come about. Full credit information is largely unavailable or difficult to access, with most studio musicians, engineers and backing vocalists left unrecognised for their work or achievements.
Taking part in MPG’s Credit Where Credit Is Due initiative, Trevor Horn, Tony Visconti, Nigel Godrich and Spike Stent filmed a video together earlier this year at the MPG Awards in London. The video makes the case for credit information, spelling out just how important accurate crediting is to the future of the music industry.
“For the young guys out there, people starting out, credits are everything and it’s really important they get the recognition,” says Spike Stent, who has worked with the likes of Coldplay, Arcade Fire and Ed Sheeran.
Trevor Horn goes further, discussing his first major hit, Video Killed The Radio Star, he acknowledges that many who worked on the track were really hurt when their names weren’t included on the sleeve notes.
“It also left it wide open for four or five different people to claim that they went ‘oh-ah oh,” he says. “Well, I know who did it, so there’s a load of people out there – stop saying you did it because you f***ing didn’t, and you know it!”
“We feel it is time that all those involved in the production of recorded music got the credit they deserve,” says MPG director and producer Tommy D who is spearheading the initiative. “These credits were previously included and easily accessible within the sleeve notes and artwork of CDs and vinyl albums. They were an essential and standard practice, within the music business. And don’t underestimate how essential they are – not just because they acknowledge the hard work and effort that had gone into making a recording, but also because they accurately define and thus allow the industry to compensate those professionals, for years to come.”
Currently, crediting information for a particular song or album, can only accessed after spending time searching the internet. Even then, the info (if found) is often wildly inaccurate and not properly endorsed by the industry.
The MPG feels that the music industry is apathetic towards fully crediting music, which (it says) belies a deeper disregard and disrespect for the back room staff, as a whole. The organisation also believes the industry is missing an essential marketing tool by denying consumers an easy way to cross reference and search for the work of labels, musicians, producers, engineers, etc.
“We need to rectify this short-coming, and the best way to do that is by lobbying,” Tommy D adds. “The MPG is encouraging all consumers and recording artists to make their voices heard so that the music and technology industries, responsible for the distribution of recorded music are left in no doubt that we want credit information, and that it needs to be attached and accessible at the source of the listening experience.”
Mastering engineer and MPG member, Barry Grint, started the initiative in an effort to persuade record labels to implement industry standard ISRC codes into digital files. ISRC is a music identification system which incorporates a unique and permanent digital fingerprint in music files. According to the MPG, embedding an accurate ISRC code guarantees the identity of the recording, and opens the door to attaching accurate credits to a digital file.
In Australia, ARIA has publically recommended all music producers adopt the ISRC codes (both ARIA members and non-members), personal ISRC codes can be applied for, here.
You can watch the Trevor Horn, Tony Visconti, Nigel Godrich and Spike Stent video below:
For more information about the MPG’s Credit Where Credit Is Due campaign check: www.mpg.org.uk.
Excerpts from PR