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Old 10-15-2014, 01:54 PM
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rca2000 rca2000 is offline
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Maybe the wrong place to ask--but WHERE did the stations get their 'promo music" from

Some here have been in the TV broadcasting fielod for a long time. So--I am not sure anyone can help0 me--but here goes.

I have LONG wanted to find out where the various networks (the three "C" ones in particular) got the "music" they USED to run--before they showed a movie. I am talking about the short instrumental pieces they would play--as the movie was announced--but BEFORE it actually began. This was during a station promo that came before a movie--titles like "the big show" or "Sunday afternoon movie" or " Late people movies" or such--then after this short interval--the actual movie would begin. This was in an era BEFORE all-night tv.

SOME of it was from standard instrumental pieces commercially available--but NOT NEARLY all of it.

ANYONE know what I am talking about? Some of the music I have LONG desired to acquire--IF it is available anywhere.
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Old 10-15-2014, 08:04 PM
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I recall a local station using the first few bars of the second movement of Tchaikovsky - Serenade for Strings, Op. 48:

No idea what orchestra or recording. It's a wonder they didn't wear it out.
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Old 10-15-2014, 10:41 PM
Chip Chester Chip Chester is offline
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Perhaps "needle drop" music... in the old sense, where stylistically-familiar but not-quite-copied tunes were written, arranged, and performed for use in commercial productions, like TV and radio spots, station IDs, promos, etc. Larger markets had custom music packages made (like the scene in Broadcast News), but smaller markets had to make do with standard music library selections. These records were also used for poor-man's post-scoring. Envision twenty different five-second music snippets, all titled "Dramatic Stab" (as in a quick orchestrated accent tune.)
After awhile, it got to where you could pick them out... "album 12, cut 3"

The thing that made it work was that it was all "cleared" -- the composition, arrangement, and performance was able to be licensed for a given time. No geographic exclusivity, or anything like that. But they wouldn't hunt you down for using it.

I think the name was Capital Music Library. Then years later, along came the Network music library, followed by many others. Much better production values, more modern-sounding tunes, and pre-edited into full length (6-8 min or so), 2-minute, 1-minute, :30, :15, :10, and tag length versions. Still no exclusivity, but licensing was all covered, and you could do a buy-out of one theme, or the whole library.

Again, if you heard some cuts of the Network music library today, you'd remember them from spots, shows, or news bumpers.

The use of specific "mainstream" orchestral recordings was supposed to be licensed. You would have to license the original composition, if there was still a valid copyright for the composer, his heirs, or some foundation. The arrangement, and the performers would also need to be licensed. Stations would often try to say "hey, we have an ASCAP license, so we can use anything we want for free. They failed to understand synchronization rights, which state that their ASCAP license only covers them for when they're reading live copy on-air, over the recorded music.

And now, my fingers are tired.

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Old 10-16-2014, 06:00 PM
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I had a buddy that worked in a radio station in the 80's and I used to go in to visit. They had in their record library a section of albums of short instrumentals for tv/radio stations to use specifically for show intros and news themes, etc. It was unlimited rights kind of stuff so they didn't have to report it ASCAP every time they played it.

We used to have a tv station that played Herb Alpert's Rise as theme music for their daily afternoon movie. I always figured they must have paid a bunch to ASCAP every week for that song, unless Herb or A&M Records offered some sort of license deal for it. I remember other Herb Alpert and TJB songs were frequently used for intros too.
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Old 05-14-2015, 11:27 AM
Murphu222 Murphu222 is offline
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go to This is one of the many companies that produce production music for broadcast and other productions.
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