Music licensing for games

Music clearance for game developers and gamemusic producers.  Music consulting, music legal advice  and music contracts.

Copyrights, publishing rights, master rights.

Master Use & Sync License


synchronization rights Synchronization Rights

Synchronization rights are a subcategory of publishing rights. It includes the right to re-record and sync a particular musical composition with visual elements in your game. There is no compulsory license for synchronization rights: mutual agreement needs to be reached. Sync licenses do not fall under statutory law. In the USA, a sync license can generally be obtained via the Harry Fox Agency. Usually a flat fee must be paid to use the song for a particular period of time. This is an important part of the music clearance process.

In case you want to combine audio and video in your project and use the original recording you'll also need a master recording license. Generally, the sync license is obtained from the owner of the publishing (artist or publisher), while the master recording license is obtained from the owner of the master rights, usually being the record company. This also depends on the types of music used in a particular game.

In some countries music contractual arrangements must be made directly with the copyrightholder, usually the songwriter or a publisher, in other countries a license needs to be obtained via the copyrightholder's performance rights organization (only if the owner of the publishing rights is affiliated of course).

When you are on a tight budget you can choose to use a cover version of the song instead of the original hitparade version: in this case just a sync license is needed, no master recording license. Other negotiation points are prominence of the song, length of the segment, territory and future use.

For more information about synchronization rights, our services and rates contact us or email


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