Entertainment Law Mentor: Negotiating Exclusive Songwriting Agreements

Entertainment Law Mentor: Negotiating Exclusive Songwriting Agreements

A detailed “how to” book about negotiating the large print, the fine print, and everything in between which is commonly found in exclusive songwriting agreements. Steve Weaver presents a template exclusive songwriting agreement and then explains what each paragraph of the agreement means (even translating it into plain English) and he then proceeds to list, analyze and discuss important considerations and suggested negotiation points, solutions and language from both the perspective of the songwriter and the music publisher.

The author has spent over 30 years as an entertainment attorney, consultant, speaker and educator. He has represented and currently represents hall of fame and hall of fame bound songwriters, music publishers, record labels, producers, recording artists and other individuals and companies in the music industry. What he has learned about negotiation of exclusive songwriting agreements is shared in this book.

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 Advance Praise for Negotiating Exclusive Songwriting Agreements:

There are lots of books on the music business. Most of them are worthless. Steve Weaver’s book on negotiating publishing agreements is priceless. This is a step by step guide that can be used by songwriters, publishers and attorneys. I wish this book had been around when I started practicing law.

—— Sawnie “Trip” Aldredge,Esq., Entertainment Attorney, Nashville Tennessee


A thorough and informative guide to understanding and negotiation of the essential provisions of a songwriter agreement.

—— Duff Berschbach, Esq., Senior Vice President, Business Affairs, Nashville, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC


I have known and worked with Steve on many music business deals for many years, usually he was representing the songwriter and I was representing the music publisher.  Steve’s knowledge of the music industry is vast, and I have learned much from negotiating with him.  Steve knows what items are important, and is one of those very few attorneys who always manages to cover both the short term desires and the long term needs of his clients.  I wish this book had been available at the beginning of my career.

—— Joseph F. Brazil, Esq., Law Offices of Joseph Brazil PLLC (Former In-House Lawyer and V.P. of Business Affairs for Major Record Label and Music Publisher)


I’ve enjoyed working with Steve over the past 30 years while negotiating deals between our clients.  He was always insightful and this book is a reflection of his knowledge and experience in the music industry.  I would recommend this to anyone who wants to learn more about the songwriter publisher relationship.

—— J. Rush Hicks, Attorney and Chair of the Music Business Program in the Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business, Belmont University


Steve, what a great gift to those who are trying to decipher the convoluted world of music publishing!. This book will be one of those ‘must haves’ for people wanting to learn how we get to a fair resolution of a publishing contract.

—— Tim Wipperman, CEO Wipperman Music Group (Former Executive VP/Executive GM, Warner Chappell Music (29 years); Former Chief Creative Officer and President, Equity Music Group)