VIDEO: How PROs process split sheets

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Process sheets are the most important part of any collaboration. Do you know how they work?

The vast majority of musicians rely on their knowledge and wits, or that or their managers, to navigate the music industry. That approach is good at first, but as your level of success begins to rise it’s always smart to surround yourself with people who may be better versed in the more complicated areas of the business. For example, songwriting credits and royalties.

You don’t have to follow industry news closely to know there have been many lawsuits involving artists and their teams where disputes boil down to who gets paid and how much they get paid for a song or record. While some of those cases are the result of shady business practices, others come to pass because the people involved at the point of creation were not fully aware of how Performance Rights Organizations (or PROs) calculate payouts.

As SonicBids explains, a publishing split sheet (often simply referred to as a split sheet) is a document that states who wrote what percentage of the song(s) recorded by a band or artist. A split sheet should be created for every song you write, before ever shopping it to a third party to be published commercially.

We recognize that many artists hate to think of music as a business, but those make a career out of music do so because they treat it as a business. Take a few minutes today to learn how split sheets work to ensure you get paid what you are owed for all future creations:

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the Director of Customer Engagement at Haulix and host of the company's podcast, Inside Music. He is also a public speaker known for promoting careers in the entertainment industry, as well as an entertainment journalist with over a decade of experience. His bylines include Rolling Stone, Alternative Press, Substream Magazine, Nu Sound, and Under The Gun Review, among other popular outlets.