Why my song sheets aren’t free for Song Notes members to download anymore
As of May 2021, I moved my “song” sheet music arrangements off of Patreon for copyright reasons. But fear not, you can still get them! They’re currently available for individual purchase via Musicnotes.com, a website which ensures each song sheet is properly licensed – so the publishers & songwriters get their fair share. You can save 50% on each Musicnotes purchase if you’re a Song Notes member, via a discount code I send out each month. (Learn more about that here).
Here’s some common questions I’ve received, along with answers.
How do I search your song lessons?
As always, the best way to search my lessons using this website. You can easily filter by “song” lessons while searching. From any song lesson page, if there is sheet music available, there’s a big button near the top of that song’s page – you can’t miss it. Clicking that will take you to the Musicnotes page to buy the sheet music.
What is Musicnotes, and how do I use it?
Musicnotes.com is a separate site (no relation to Song Notes) that sells sheet music from folks like myself. Here’s a video I made showing how to buy something from Musicnotes. Here’s the quick summary:
- To begin with, all my “song” arrangements on Musicnotes are individually purchasable. As of now there’s no way to by a book or bundle of songs.
- When you buy sheet music on Musicnotes.com, your purchase includes single print-out of the arrangement, in addition to on-going access to the digital sheet music on the Musicnotes apps (smartphone, tablet, and desktop).
- If you also want a PDF file (to email to yourself, to put in Dropbox, to open in other apps) it’s a separate, additional charge ($2).
- These restrictions may seem frustrating – but they are par-for-the-course when it comes to buying licensed sheet music. See for example, Justin Sandercoe’s “Tabs” product – which don’t even allow printing.
Why did you take them off Patreon in the first place?
In April and May 2021, a few publishers reached out to me requesting that I remove copyrighted materials (sheet music arrangements) that I was making freely available to everyone who provided general support via my Patreon page. I immediately obliged, as I want to honor existing copyright law.
Of course, if possible I wanted to continue to make the sheet music arrangements available – as I’m proud of the hard work that went into them, and so many of you have given great feedback about them. The only way for me to do that was to get the arrangements properly licensed. Fortunately, Musicnotes.com is a leader in digital sheet music and can license each “song” PDF I post on their site – keeping me “in the clear” legally.
What about the other Patreon teachers who offer sheet music?
I can’t speak for other teachers on Patreon – I wish them all the best with whatever they decide to do. I’m guessing most of them haven’t received take-down notices, but can’t be sure. I do know my Patreon page is quite popular, which likely was a factor in getting noticed by publishers. Again, I’m making this choice out of respect to the rights holders for these songs, and likewise I want to avoid legal risk. I also want my songs arrangements to remain available to you all – and this is the best way to do it within the letter of the law.
Does this copyright situation effect your video lessons?
Fortunately, it does not impact my videos. They will remain available on YouTube, as they are currently. YouTube already has copyright mechanisms in place, where uploaded videos that contain copyrighted songs are recognized and “claimed” by the publishers, who are then brought in the loop when it comes to monetization.
What about your other (non-song) lessons?
None of this effects my non-“song” lessons. Riffs, exercises, techniques, theory, etc –- those PDFs will remain available as-is to Song Notes members (via this site, as well as Patreon for folks who signed up before Fall 2022). I’ll keep making these, as well – and likewise continue to improve their organization – making them easy to find, etc.
Will you keep making “song” lessons?
Yes, these absolutely will continue, just as they have the prior 3 years! While it’s true I have pulled back from song lessons for a few weeks while I worked out the licensing issues, I’ve since returned to regularly making song lessons.
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