I’ve gotten a lot of questions lately about what a music producer does, so I decided I would do a little research about different contracts for production. There are three main types of contracts a producer will sign: a contract where the producer produces the entire album for the artist, a contract where the producer only creates a musical track, and a contract where the producer makes the master recordings and shops around to get a record deal for the artist.
Entire album- usually the producer is paid a fee and an additional “record royalty”, 20%-25% of what the artist is paid from the record company every time the product is sold. These producers usually are helping the artist, band, or group in the studio successfully record.
Track producer- usually creates music on the computer or the music to the vocals the artist or songwriter writes. They will co-own the song with the person who writes the lyrics. They are paid a fee for the creation of the recording, but they have the rights to the music they write. They also receive part of the artist’s royalty, but it’s only 5-8%. This type of production contract has become very popular in hip hop.
Development producer- the producer and artist work together to create the master recordings and shop them to record labels to help them obtain a deal. There are different kinds of development deals. A lot of these deals depend on whether or not the artist gets a record deal, in which case the producer would get a percentage of the artist’s advance, a flat fee, and/or a percentage of the artist’s royalties.