#1
I did a search for this and nothing really came up.

So, here is my question;

We recently kicked out our drummer for being a dick, he then said "Fine, but if you use my drum tracks I'll sue you", or something of that nature.

Now we're 16 mind you, so I can't see any real legal action taking place, but just wondering, even if we kept the exact same everything, (i.e. same ammout of snare hits, cowbell use, ect...) can we legally keep it as our own?

We've already got 6 songs recorded with all parts to them, so does he technically own the drum beats?

Thanks.
#2
I don't know exactly how the legal details of that would work, but I'm pretty sure he wouldn't have a leg to stand on in court. Besides you guys are 16 years old, there will be no lawsuits lol. He probably wouldn't have the money to pay for legal fees and a lawyer to take you guys to court anyway. And I doubt he'd win if he did somehow take you guys to court.
#3
I think you have to have someone else play the parts, but other than that he doesn't own them. In law he might have some rights for writing the parts, but in practice drum beats aren't really copywrited.

I am not a lawyer. I also don't know much about the legal system.
#4
If you've published the songs with the copyright belonging to your band, it is not owned by him but by the band itself.
You've made the music in the name of the band, and, as I see it, it doesn't matter who joins or leaves the band, the music made in the name of the band will always belong to the band, and not a individual person
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#5
^ +1

Even though you may not have copyrighted the songs if the drum tracks were laid while writing the bands songs they are the bands drum tracks. If he wrote them before joining the band and you all used them it might be a different story.
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#6
yes but then again it was YOU who kicked him out, it's probably legal IF you re record all the songs with a difrent drummer, ur drummer dosnt own the drumm track (unless he copyrighted it) and he cant take u to court if its a new drummer playin, anyway even if it WERE illegal i dnt think he cud take u to court, (ur only 16, same age as me) and at that age u wont get takin to court BELIEVE ME!
#7
If you've published the songs with the copyright belonging to your band, it is not owned by him but by the band itself.
You've made the music in the name of the band, and, as I see it, it doesn't matter who joins or leaves the band, the music made in the name of the band will always belong to the band, and not a individual person


But, as was demonstrated in the recent case about 'A Whiter Shade of Pale', it is possible to bring a claim based on one's contribution to a song, for a share of the royalties.
If you credit the song to the band, and he's in it, he will technically have an equal claim to any royalties made from that recording with any of the rest of the band, and they would be shared out with him taking some. If you re-record the stuff, he still has some form of claim for creating the damn thing. It's like if a song rips off another one, you can be sued, even if you don't use exactly the same riffs.

I don't think you need worry about it, but any good drummer won't have a problem writing new drums, which is the paranoid decision to make.
#8
drum beats can't be copyrighted, he would however have copyright on any recordings he played in though, but you could just get the new drummer to play his parts on that.
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#9
drum beats can't be copyrighted, he would however have copyright on any recordings he played in though, but you could just get the new drummer to play his parts on that.


This is the correct response. Drum beats cannot be copyrighted, even famous beats like when the levee breaks. There is just too little a distinction to make a beat sound unique enough to give it a copyright.

I am not sure about the recordings, but i believe those can be copyrighted, but that is if he has proof that they are his recordings. You could probably use them and be just fine. If he brings it up just say someone else played it and he won't be able to do a thing. And also no lawyer would ever take this case.
#10
he cant sue u o prevent u using the beat howeer should u become rich n famous he would be entitled to royalties for songs he helped write
#11
Quote by AsILayDying28
I did a search for this and nothing really came up.

So, here is my question;

We recently kicked out our drummer for being a dick, he then said "Fine, but if you use my drum tracks I'll sue you", or something of that nature.

Now we're 16 mind you, so I can't see any real legal action taking place, but just wondering, even if we kept the exact same everything, (i.e. same ammout of snare hits, cowbell use, ect...) can we legally keep it as our own?

We've already got 6 songs recorded with all parts to them, so does he technically own the drum beats?

Thanks.

i think he would be entitled to some of the profits if you ended up making money off of those songs. because he did in fact play on the song and helped make it what it is. although unless he can prove for sure that he even played on the tracks, i dont think there is much he can do. i supose you could always claim that although he was in the band it is in fact not him playing on the tracks. but you might as well get another drummer to record the drum parts over again. im pretty sure it doesnt matter if he plays the beat the same as your ex drummer. im pretty sure thats one of those things that cant be copywritten.
#12
Quote by Blind In 1 Ear
i think he would be entitled to some of the profits if you ended up making money off of those songs. because he did in fact play on the song and helped make it what it is. although unless he can prove for sure that he even played on the tracks, i dont think there is much he can do. i supose you could always claim that although he was in the band it is in fact not him playing on the tracks. but you might as well get another drummer to record the drum parts over again. im pretty sure it doesnt matter if he plays the beat the same as your ex drummer. im pretty sure thats one of those things that cant be copywritten.


I agree. Technically speaking, especially if he recorded the drum parts, then he should be entitled to some of the profit.

If it went to court though, it'd be up to him to product evidence that he wrote the pieces and that the drum beats he wrote are the same ones your band still uses.
#13

If it went to court though, it'd be up to him to product evidence that he wrote the pieces and that the drum beats he wrote are the same ones your band still uses.


And all he needs to do that is call the members of the band as witnesses, or if they appear as witnesses for the defence, and just ask them. Remember, you're under oath, and you're fuggled if you lie in court and they catch you out.
OK, that wouldn't potentially be enough if the band members managed to avoid ever being sworn in, but it'd be pretty decisive.

Not saying this is likely to happen, mind, just mentioning it in case someone else in a different situation relies on what this forum says. :P
#14
It's funny that everyone that posted said the exact same thing. And I really doubt the kid would actually take it to court. I think he was just asking for clarification, not if it actually happened.
#15
You cannot copyright a drum beat, if you could, you'd be able to take everyone that ever wrote a song with the same basic beat to court and claim payment from them.
He could be entitled to royalties from recording sales if he's helped to write the songs, but it can always be argued that whoever came up with the main riff for the songs actualy determined what beat the song was played in before the drummer even hit anything.