Using in the Classroom
Published: 09/18/2007

In this fast-paced ever-changing world of the music industry, it’s difficult to provide students with up-to-date curriculum. Textbooks covering many aspects of the music industry—such as distribution and Internet radio and so much more—become outdated on a weekly, sometimes daily basis. How is a music educator to keep up with these changes and provide students with timely and relevant information in their music industry programs? Enter

This free resource, funded by the Herb Alpert Foundation, provides hundreds of up-to-the-minute video interviews, articles, and blogs from the movers and shakers of the music industry. ArtistsHouseMusic is a lesson-planning dream!

The vastness of this resource can be overwhelming at first, but its organization and design makes it very easy to find what you are looking for. To get started, do a keyword search for a topic you are teaching in an upcoming class, using one of the three search approaches described below. Review the video clips and articles that your search yielded, and plug the relevant links into your lesson plan document. ArtistsHouseMusic also provides links for every video clip, enabling you to play the video content directly from your own course support site if you prefer.

For example, if you are looking for information about music publishing, you can:

1. Type the keyword phrase “music publishing” into the search box on the home page to yield many article and video results, or




2. Click the keyword tag cloud phrase “music publishing"









3. Type the name of a known ArtistsHouseMusic contributor with expertise in music publishing such as Ron Sobel.













Once you find the content you are looking for, you can begin to incorporate these materials into your lesson plans.

The following is a sample lesson plan on Performance Rights Organizations (PROs) for a high-school level Music Industry Studies course. This plan utilizes a textbook, lecture notes*, as well as video and article content from that was discovered by searching the keyword phrase “Performance Rights Organizations.”

GRADE LEVEL: High School

SUBJECT: Music Business

PREPARED BY: Debbie Cavalier, using lesson plan materials developed by George Howard



Lesson Name

An Introduction to Performance Rights Organizations
Objectives(Specify skills/information that will be learned.)

As a result of this lesson, students will be able to:

· understand performance rights organizations and how they benefit and serve musicians.

· understand when a performance rights license is needed.

· understand which performance rights organization would be best for their needs and why.

Materials needed


Getting Signed!
by George Howard, Chapter 10

ArtistsHouseMusic Article

“What’s the Difference between ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, Music Reports?”
By George Howard

ArtistsHouseMusic Videos

How to get your band’s career started the right way by George Howard

When does one need an ASCAP License

The difference between ASCAP and BMI by Jeffrey Brabec

BMI and other PROs by Charlie Feldman

Procedure(Teaching methods and learning activities i.e. Review, lecture, student involvement, independent study)

1. Independent Study: Students read chapter 10 of Getting Signed

2. In-class Lecture: Performance Rights Organizations In-class lecture: (notes overview)

All writers (and publishers) should register with one of the Performing Rights Organizations (ASCAP, BMI, or SESAC).

These organizations collect money from people who use or broadcast music (radio stations, TV stations, venues, restaurants, etc.). These people who use or broadcast music pay a fee to ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC for a "blanket" license, which allows them to use or broadcast as much music as they want, whenever they want. The more people who hear the music they use or broadcast, the higher the fee they pay to the PROs. In other words, KROQ pays a lot more to ASCAP, BMI, or SESAC than does your local college radio station. These PROs take samples of what is being used or broadcast at any given time, come up with a list, and divide up these blanket license fees they receive from those who use or broadcast the music, and then they pay it to their affiliated writers. So, every half-year, Sting gets a whopping check from his PRO—BMI—while a brand new band with hardly any radio play, except for a couple of spins on a college station, gets about $50.

3. Independent Study: Students review video clips listed above

Assessment(Evaluation strategies: i.e. Test, quiz, observation, discussion, performance demonstration)

· Class discussion

· Quiz

· Student paper on which Performance Rights Organization they would choose and why.

· Optional: Register with a Performance Rights Organization

*The lecture notes for this sample lesson has been extracted from a Berkleemusic online course entitled Inside the Record Industry by George Howard.

Please feel free to use the lesson plan template contained within this guide to begin utilizing ArtistsHouseMusic resources in your own classes. Also, please let us know how you’re using the resources in your classroom and what additional resources you’d like to see available. We’d love to hear from you!

Wishing you all the best.

Debbie Cavalier

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