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Business Affairs

Man, it ain't easy coming up with a creative or clever anecdote about Business Affairs. The truth is, there is nothing funny about it -- it's as cut and dried as it gets. Essentially, the Business Affairs department is a collection of lawyers who work at the record label on its behalf. Remember, however, that record company lawyers, like all other record company employees, have chosen this path for their careers because they are music fans. Therefore, your encounters with them won't be as sterile as you may imagine. Your lawyer (yes, you definitely need one at this point) will work on your behalf, and with your manager, to negotiate an agreeable contract with the label's lawyers via its Business Affairs department. I know, I know. You're the artist, the creative entity, and they are the lawyers and the businessmen. Leave it to them. True, the subject can be boring and you can easily get lost in the legal terminology and flowery rhetoric of "business affairs." However, understanding the basics is actually both important and interesting. After you and your A&R person agree that you were meant for each other, the lawyers take over. Your lawyer and the business affairs department at your future record label then begin the negotiating process. The Business Affairs department begins with the template of a standard recording agreement. As they begin to hammer out individual points, the contract is tailored to become your specific deal.
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