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How can I credit everyone correctly on my release?
When creating a music release, accurately filling in contributor information is crucial for proper referencing. There are two "levels" you need to distinguish;
the "Release Level" is where you indicate information regarding the release as a whole, whereas the "Track Level" only concerns each individual track.
The following is a guide to the key roles of a release, ensuring careful inclusion and referencing of everyone's work, at all levels. The first key to correct referencing is consistency.
Artists should always appear on the artwork exactly as listed in the metadata, with the same name, order and role. Artists that appear on less than 50% of the tracks cannot be listed on the "Release Level" and cannot appear on the artwork.
The primary performer of the track or release.
If 3 or more artists are listed as main artists on the "Release Level", platforms will automatically categorize the release as a compilation.
Please note: Compound Artists (2 or more main artists listed as one) have to be listed as such.
Vs. and Meets
Both "Vs." and "Meets" are main roles.
Ensure artists appear in the same order on the artwork for consistency.
"Meets" refers to collaborations where artists come together to create music.
"Versus" suggests a musical duel or competition between artists or groups.
Artists who guest feature on a track or a whole release (in this case, include the featuring artist's name on more than 50% of the tracks).
The release appears under the Main Artist's discography and under the Featured Artist's "Appears On" discography.
In this example, Kylie Minogue is featuring in "Where the Wild Roses Grow:
so the release won't appear on her main section but here:
Similar to "Featured," but implies more collaboration.
May not always appear as a "featured artist" on platforms. Typically refers to collaborative efforts without specifying a hierarchical relationship.
Oversees the production.
Include the producer's name in the "Contributors" section.
Artists who remix someone else's work.
- Add the remixer's artist name in the "Artist details" section of the track with the role "Remixed by"
- Add the remixer's artist name in the "Version or remix name" of the track title. E.g.: Late Night (Solomun Remix)
- If distributing on iTunes/Apple Music, enter the remixer's legal name as "Programmer" in the "Performers" section.
For labels or producers, cannot be the main artist of the release.
This is whoever's behind the composition and writing of the music and lyrics.
It is essential to fill in the full legal name of all those who worked on the creation of the track. Also, please note that the mention "Traditional" is only reserved for songs in the folk repertoire for which the authors and composers are unknown. If you don't know the name of the author/composer of the track you're exploiting, take the time to do some research beforehand on the various collecitng societies databases (GEMA, ASCAP, SACEM, etc.) or other sources on the web.
Don't forget that the more mistakes you make in the metadata you provide, the least chances there are your release will pass the quality check, but most importantly, copyright is something we're very strict about.
For the contributors, you should mainly distinguish between :
Whoever wrote the lyrics.
Whoever composed the music.
Quite rare as it is more for classical music, but it's whoever arranged the music.
As above (The "Producer" section). When uploading, include the producer's name in the "Artists" section. Note that platforms like Spotify display this information in the credits.