We all want to limit health risks at home and in the communities that we visit on tour. As we consider the effects of COVID-19 on the live music industry and our individual roles, here is part two of a series of blogs to address some considerations likely on your mind, and a few others you might not have thought of. Click here for part one.
What are your obligations to others?
- Does your agreement with your band require everyone to share expenses, even if the expected revenues are not generated? For our band agreement blog, click here.
- Does your agreement with your side artists allow you to cancel for any reason, including if the gig is cancelled? Are any of those agreements “pay or play” – which require you to pay your side artist whether they play or not?
- If you are paying a manager a monthly consulting fee that you expected to be able to earn from touring, do you have any clauses in your agreement that protect you if the tour is cancelled? For our management agreement blog, click here.
- How does your arrangement with your booking agent deal with a crisis such as this?
It is preferable to formalize your arrangements with your professional partners early in the relationship, rather than later. This includes provisions that cover both the successes and what happens when things don’t go as planned.
If you decide not to insist on enforcing all of the protections in your agreement, you may want to give some of them up – to “waive” some of your rights. Before waiving rights, be sure that you aren’t unintentionally waiving other rights as well. Make sure your waiver is clearly stated and that your agreement includes a standard waiver clause that specifically allows you to waive an entitlement once, but not be required to continue waiving that entitlement in future. For example: “the failure of any party to enforce any provision of this agreement shall not be considered as a waiver or a limitation of that party’s right to subsequently enforce and compel strict compliance with every provision of this agreement…”.
Stay safe and best of success finding creative ways to interact with your fans and make a living until we get through this crisis together.
Edwards PC, Creative Law is a boutique law firm provides legal services to Music, Film, Animation, TV, Digital Media, Game, and Publishing industry clients. For more info and blogs, please visit www.edwardslaw.ca
Regarding music law, Byron Pascoe works with musicians, producers, managers, and music companies to assist with record label agreements, publishing contracts, distribution deals, producer agreements, etc.
© 2020 Edwards PC, Creative Law
* This article is for general informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice. Please contact Edwards PC, Creative Law or another lawyer, if you wish to apply these concepts to your specific circumstances.