Do you really need a music attorney? How do you know?

There are people who write, sing, perform and record music as a hobby. They have no intention of selling or exploiting their talents in any way. For such people music is an enjoyable form of expression, a hobby; something used to entertain family and friends. Such people may not have the need to invest in a Music Attorney.

On the other hand, there are those for whom music is a passion, a calling and, hopefully, a career. For such people a Music Attorney is critical. Music Attorneys protect musical artists. The simplest contracts or letters may have far reaching effects. Is the agreement to use your music "exclusive"? What is the duration? The territory? Is there an "out" if the other side does not perform to expectations? Every agreement, no matter how simple, can affect an Artist's career in unintended ways.

Equally important is turning oral agreements into written documents. Band members or songwriting partners can be life- long friends but may have very different understandings or recollections as to what they agreed to. Sometimes collaborators never contemplated the subsequent events. Feelings are hurt, lawsuits are threatened and the hiring of a Music Attorney at that point may not resolve the controversy or repair the damage. Every time an Artist works with others, a simple document should be created to confirm the understanding. A good Music Attorney will not only create a document everyone can understand, but will ask questions to deal with possible situations the participants never considered and incorporate those terms into the Contract.

If you are serious about your Music Career, an Attorney should be retained early on and be there to advise and protect you every step of the way as you strive for critical and/or commercial success. Randal Neal Cohen has the experience and the passion to give you the advice and protection you need to ensure that your career has every chance of success. Call him for a free consultation before you begin your collaborations with other Musicians, Producers, Songwriters, or Personal Managers.

Management and Consulting Services

For Artists without management a music attorney can provide advise and counsel; act as a liaison with record companies, tour managers and publicists. This service may be provided on an hourly or percentage basis.

For non-U.S. Artists with (or seeking) record contracts or tours in the U.S. a music attorney can act as management liaisons. We interact with the Artist's manager while overseeing, monitoring and guiding the U.S. activities of the Artist and reporting back to local management. These services are typically performed on a commission basis from U.S. derived income.


The personal manager gives advice and council in all aspects of the artist's creative career and bases his commissions accordingly. He should be free of conflicts of interest. He should have a total understanding of the artist's creative and business objectives and have an enthusiastic belief in the artist's creative abilities.

A music attorney should also have an understanding of the artist's creative vision and career objectives before he negotiates agreements including those with a record company, manager, and publisher. Some artists should value and require long term development over large initial advances which place enormous pressure on the artist to see quickly or face being dropped by the record company due to financial considerations. A large initial advance might work philosophically for a "boy band" but not for an "alternative" artist. Different career objectives and circumstances will dictate whether to seek a publishing contract or self-publish for artist who write their own material.

For a free consultation call (800) 718-4658 or email at