Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Specialty Topics › Wedding and Event Video › Please explain to me music copyright in Wedding Videos › Todd, I moved your thread
I moved your thread into the proper spot. No worries. Okay, long story short; whether in a wedding vid or whatever, to use music of any type you do not personally own the rights to (i.e. hold copyright), it has to be royalty-free or you must have permission from the rights holder (who owns the copyright) in order to use it.
If you do not have rights to the music (which most likely you don’t), there is a ‘Fair Use’ clause but it’s mainly for educational products or use in parodies. However, it’s really loose and if you’re using the music commercially you will not fall under the clause’s protection. Penalties for copyright infringement are stiff to ruinous! Best things to do are; work out deals with local musicians for original work, use royalty-free and or contracted music to cover your requirements. If the couple is adamant about using a mainstream song without getting permission to do so tell them what it will cost to get permission (starting prices are around $15k and higher depending on the artist.)
However, there is quite a bit of really good music of the type that won’t get you in trouble to choose from. Same rules apply for artwork and photographs too….