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An expansion of Rule 5:
Here's a bit of this topic's
Ken explained the Forum rules on this. Pretty clear I think.
But further, please consider this. Bagpipe Music Writer (and Finale, Sibelius, ABC etc) are described as music writing software, not music copying software or music plagiarizing software. I think we should use the software as intended.
I use BMW Gold to write music and to arrange music for my band's use.
Before BMW I used to write music out by hand. It took a long time and was a pain in the ass too. I don't think I ever asked anyone to write it out for me, though.
So here's some common sense guidelines about the distribution and transcription of music...
In general: Use BMW and the like to WRITE music. Please don't use it to re-publish anything. We are all well aware of the boundaries here, so let's grow up and use the tools we have at our disposal properly.
Published Music: There is no excuse for laziness and cheating. There are directories everywhere. Find them and find out where the music is published then order the book. You can get any in print book in 2 or 3 days now.
There isn't a piper alive who can request the BMW manuscript for "Itchy Fingers" and still claim to believe that it is public domain material. It's in Marking Time. I think you would owe Mr Mathieson the courtesy of buying his book.
New stuff and/or Unpublished Music: Take the extra step for unpublished music too. Unpublished usually includes new compositions and arrangements of other material (mostly trad). If you want the music for Blue Cloud, find out who the composer is, track him down through this forum or some other tool and ask if you can get a copy. I can do this. So it must be fairly easy to do! I do it this way all the time. Terry Lee does it this way. Bob Worrall, Jack Lee, Michael Grey, and hundreds of others all do this. We honour the value in a piece of musical art and do our very best to use the music in a proper fashion.
Most composers are actually quite flattered to be asked for music. If they won't give it to you, then accept it. I guess some composers don't want their tunes played, odd as that may seem. Sometimes refusal is because we have written a piece specifically for one performer or band to use and we may not give out music in that case.
Remember this - it might seem pissy, but the truth is that the Clumsy Lover belongs to me. Dunrovin Farm belongs to Michael Grey. Hellbound Train belongs to Mark Saul. etc etc. Unless you write it, no music "belongs" to you. You are implicitly afforded the right to learn it when you receive the music by permission of the composer. Publication is this permission. You have no right whatsoever to adjust, copy, rewrite, record, transmit or perform for monies that music without the rightsholder's permission.
In piping we allow some exceptions to exist. You can perform these tunes in competition without paying the rightsholder. You can also distribute the music within your band for no charge also. (Other musicians look at us in horror when they learn of this practice!)
You really should seek permission to record the tune or perform it in concert. Sometimes the composers waive the fees, sometimes they ask for rights to be honoured. Sometimes they ask for a t-shirt and a copy of the CD.
In conclusion, 3 options exist. Buy the book, get a copy from the composer/arranger or listen to the music and transcribe it for yourself (but you can't give it to anyone after that).
Quite frankly when I see someone say that it takes too long and is a pain in the ass I am appalled that such an attitude exists within any artistic community, especially one in which I am a member. Perhaps, sir, you believe that blowing in your new reed takes to long and is a pain in the ass. I would suggest you make a more sincere and honest effort to do honour to your craft. Be less lazy, and work for your successes; the reward derived from honest effort is infinitely more satisfying than the acquisition of anything through sloth.
I hope I never see another person soliciting music on this or other forums. (It's okay to say "where can I find tune xxx") I hope to see people making a real effort to find music through the proper channels. And I hope that a vigourous dedication to do it the "right way" will result in a healthier and more honourabe community of musicianship.
Well, one can always hope I suppose.
Neil D >>
I am curious - anyone reading this page (since Dec 1, 2001):
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