The Nashville Songwriters Association International’s (NSAI) 27-member songwriter Board of Directors has unanimously adopted a special resolution which recognizes BMG Publishing’s CEO Hartwig Masuch for his philosophy and actions to value songwriters.
This is the first time NSAI has recognized a publishing company CEO in this way. His philosophy, which states “BMG works for songwriters and artists. They don’t work for us,” is accompanied by a BMG mission statement that also speaks to transparency when it comes to paying their songwriter partners.
The Resolution reads as follows:
“The Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) recognizes Hartwig Masuch, Chief Executive Officer of BMG, a Bertelsmann group division.
The all-songwriter NSAI Board of Directors (unanimously voted) recognizes Masuch for his many contributions, but specifically for his demonstrations of being a creator-friendly industry leader. Under his guidance the company’s stated vision is:
‘A world in which every songwriter and artist gets to achieve their potential and receives a fair reward for doing so. Music isn’t just another business. Music is created by individuals, each of them on their own creative journey taking huge risks. The fruits of that creativity need to be paid for, fairly and efficiently. BMG aligns itself with the interests of the creative community of music.’
NSAI points to Masuch eliminating the so-called Controlled Composition clause, a practice where songwriters are asked to take a reduce royalty rate to have a song placed on an album. BMG also undertook an unprecedented review of its historic recording contracts and accelerated royalty payouts, which NSAI applauds.
Other songwriters specific company philosophies under Hartwig’s watch include:
Ambition: To be the best company in music to do business with. BMG works for songwriters and artists. They don’t work for us.
Fairness: The music industry has not always been known for treating songwriters and artists fairly. For BMG it’s an article of faith running through every department in the company. Fairness means no hidden costs or deductions. Fairness means no backdoor deals designed to enrich the company at the expense of the client. Fairness is treating your clients like partners.
Be in therefore resolved that the NSAI Board of Directors recognizes, appreciates and salutes Hartwig Masuch for his leadership in valuing songwriters, artists and everyone involved in the creative process.”
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