Friday, September 4, 2009

My ASCAP Publishing Story

Blog #22: My ASCAP Publishing Story

On April 27th 2009, I signed up with ASCAP Publishing, to start my own publishing company so that I would own all the rights to my own music.  After signing up online I received an email saying within two weeks I would get a membership card in the mail and that I would be able to start Publishing my music on their website.  In filling out the forms I got to pick three different potential names for my publishing company and whichever wasn't already taken I would get.

my potential publishing company names were:


Jon Crowley Music

Crow'sNest Music

After a month of waiting and hearing nothing I started calling them on May 19th.  They told me to be patient and that I would get my card(with account info to sign in) in the mail by the end of the week.  I also asked them if I had been approved for a publishing company name yet; they told me 'yes' and that my publishing company would be called "JCrowMusic". (I needed this information to give to the graphic artist to put on the back of the CD.)

After not receiving my card after two weeks I called again, and was told the same thing.  That I would get it in "a week or so".

All of May went by, then June, then July.  I would call ASCAP every two weeks and they would say "It should come in the next week".

On July 25th I received my CDs from Discmakers, and was looking forward to selling them, but in the back of my mind I was thinking, "This stuff isn't even published yet, someone could steal my music right off the record".  I mailed a copy of the CD to myself just in case, so I would have myself covered(?).

I continued to call and FINALLY on August 28st, I talked to someone at ASCAP that told me there had been a problem and that my publishing company was no longer called "JCrowMusic", but "Jon Crowley Music".  Despite being frustrated by the fact that the publishing company would be listed incorrectly on the back of the CDs I was happy to finally be able to publish my music.  ASCAP told me I would get an email with a account number and that I could go on the website on monday and register.

I checked my email that sunday night, and realized they had spelled my publishing company "JOHN crowley music".  Misspelling my first name. (for the record I had signed every email from them 'Jon', showing that to be a truly stupid mistake on their part).

I immediately responded to the email, informing them that they had misspelled my name.  After a week had gone by, I resent my email.  Then again after another 5 days.  Still No response.

September 1st I called ASCAP again, and recounted the whole story, and how I just wanted to publish my music.  They told me that the correction to the Publishing company name had already been made (they just never told me).

September 2nd I FINALLY was able to get onto the website and publish my songs from the album, with my new publishing company; Jon Crowley Music.

The entire ASCAP process that was supposed to take 2 weeks took 4 months!!!!

I am telling this whole story, so that anyone reading who is recording an album and setting up a publishing company gives themselves MUCH more time to get the Publishing done.  I think next time I do this, I will publish the stuff before I even go into the studio.  My advice to other people who havn't yet set up their own publishing company is to do it before you even record; it may take a VERY long time.

1 comment:

  1. Jon:

    Hi. Saw your Trumpet Herald post and visited your Blog. Can empathize re: ASCAP.

    I do indeed write CD reviews - mostly for trumpet-led jazz groups. You can see my work at (Google me there). Also, for Jazz Improv MAgazine and others.

    If you'd like me to listen, I'd be happy to do so. Good Luck with your CD efforts!!

    Nick Mondello (
    Big Toots Enterprises
    29 Riggs Place
    Locust Valley, NY 11560