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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old July 26th, 2013, 01:04 AM   #1
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Bride and music

I met my first client the other day. During our meeting she explained she wanted a particular pop song. I explained to her that I could not use someone else's music. I choose some songs from songfreedom that I though she might like. She emailed me the other day and said she did not like any of those. I asked her if she listened to any other songs on the site and she said they were ok but not her style.

As this will be my first wedding I do not have royalty music. Do I just pick some songs for her and edit them to the long version or should I have her go through the music and have her pick them? She is hard pressed on using music from itunes. I don't want to use other people's music without paying, but on the other hand since I am gonna go broke just by buying music. Since this is my first gig I am not charging that much. I understand I need to pay my dues and but at the same time I need to pay for music. About how many songs do you guys include in the long version video? Thanks in advance.
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Old July 26th, 2013, 01:58 AM   #2
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Re: Bride and music

Give her some spiel about how it would be breaking the law and that by her paying you to knowingly do so she incriminates herself too.

Heres an article by the guy from Song Freedom
7 Misconceptions About Licensing Music Legally Vs. Stealing | Fstoppers

And tell her about this incident:
"One notable example is the film of Tony Romo’s wedding that was streamed on the Internet by Austin event filmmaker Joe Simon in 2011. Although the film was only up for one day before it was taken down, that was long enough for a record label to notice that Simon had used a Coldplay song without a license. The record label sent Simon a cease and desist letter and demanded $150,000 for the unlicensed use of the song in violation of copyright law. Simon ultimately settled the claim for an undisclosed five figure sum."

Like I said in the other post though, only online content really matters. You can put anything you want on her dvds since nobody will ever see it, and also I think its classed as 'personal use'.
Online videos are deemed as 'commercial', because lets face it, its mostly how we get business - by showing our work off.
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Old July 26th, 2013, 09:47 AM   #3
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Re: Bride and music

While strictly taken you should license every song you use for paid work, all videographers I know use commercial music on their dvd's, as long as it stays within the clients family no-one cares. (told to me on the phone by a person from our Belgian music rights organisation.)

But, if you use it online for the whole world to see and for advertisement pupose to gain new clients that's another story, you can still use unlicensed music like so many videographers do on Vimeo, as long as you are not noticed no-one seems to care either but the stuff hits the fan if you get noticed like the Joe Simon example.

The thing is that as far as I am concerned the whole music industry is one big mess and full of greedy money sharks, I am for the fact that every songwriter/performer should get paid for his work but it needs to be realistic and there should be clear agreements which should apply to the whole music industry, no matter from which country you buy. You really need read the fine print on every site that offers licensed music because often it can be ok to use in the US but not in Europe. It also happens that the fine print looks OK but you find out later that you still need to pay (much more) for the same song again in your own country, like I found out with Songfreedom who simply had been lying to me about their licenses. Laws seem to be different in every country and at the end only you, the person that would like to pay for his music could get sc*wed.

In short, always license your music when you use it online but for a dvd that will only end up in your wedding clients dvdplayer, just use whatever they like, only tell them they can't rip any part of the dvd and place that online. If you work for corporate I would license any music you use and also make sure you never use video from another source without their approval, I have had companies asking for a 15 second part of a Rolling stones song "start me up" which was only to be used in a trailer showed at a small business event untill I told them EMI charged about 15.000 dollar for that, that's also what I call not realistic, especially since they could play the exact same song as background music during the event for a few 100 dollar, but once it was synced with a trailer: Bingo! :)
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Old July 26th, 2013, 05:22 PM   #4
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Re: Bride and music

Thanks guys for the reply. What do you guys do when the music she chooses doesn't really fit the mood. It is her dvd, but we are the professionals who understand how music creates a mood with visuals......what then, just make them happy and edit to her music? Obviously I understand that the highlite reel must use license music, I was just kinda wondering about the long version that is on the dvd. Again thanks. Oh by the way does anyone or can anyone share ideas regarding music in the long version. I am thinking of cousrs at the beginning when people arrive, but not during the ceremony, cocktail hour for sure, and during the dancing. Any where else? How many songs do you guys put on the dvd on average?
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Old July 26th, 2013, 08:11 PM   #5
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Re: Bride and music

Personally, I edit my ceremonies with music. Even a soft, piano only track adds a lot. I find it way to boring to just have the ceremony with no track. I'm sure people do it different ways though.

For example, my last longer cut was 25 minutes and included montages of getting ready, the celebration, speeches and the edited ceremony. I used 7 tracks total, throughout the entire film. Most were instrumental, the last montage ended with a song with lyrics.
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Old July 26th, 2013, 10:05 PM   #6
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Re: Bride and music

I appreciate the feedback. I am asking all these questions just to try (and I say try cause things can happen) to understand the wedding videos. Things have changed since I got married 13 years ago. The video was pretty horrible. I haven't really seen a long version wedding video except mine. I am sure I could do a hightlight reel with no problem, but the long version I just have questions. Thanks again.
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Old July 26th, 2013, 10:14 PM   #7
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Re: Bride and music

I'm real new at this too, and yes a lot has changed since the days when wedding videos were boring unwatchable videos. There's different ways you can go with the longer cut. Some just do straight edits of everything in order, some take a more artistic approach and blend everything into one cinematic short film, some do a little of both and kind of meet in the middle. It's all a matter of how much time you have, how much you are getting paid and what the client expects/wants.
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