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Joined: 10/26/2021 - 22:10
a question about sharing a song


(English is not my first langage, sorry if there are some mistakes)

I finished a first whole song with Caustic 3 (I also used Acoustica Mixcraft to add 3 virtual instruments and to achieve the final mix).

For this sound, I used exclusively the presets machines included in Caustic (that I purchased legaly of course). I used 5 BeatBox, 1 SawSynth, 1 PCMSynth, 1 Modular, 1 FMSynth, and 2 KSSynth.

From this, I have chosen the notes I wanted, changing and mixing again and again (the tone, saturation and / or others effects).

On one hand, I can't say that this song is 100% my creation. It's not a big deal, because I also have a strong passion for having only the role of a "conductor". I think sampling can be a wonderful exchange between, on the one hand, people who bring their own creation (in this case, the presets) and, on the other hand, the person who compose a final track (which is also a creation).

So for this song, I was like a "puzzle man" who "just" puts notes and arrange again and again (dozens of hours...) to achieve the ideal result.

My QUESTION is : given that the presets used are not mine (even if I have modified them) is it possible, firstly, to simply broadcast the sound, and second, to do so by offering people to give money (without obligation) ? I'm totally okay with sharing the money (if there is of course) with the Caustic developers and the presets creators. The discussion is open. I am interested to have your opinions about this and what are the community rules on this.

Also, how can I show the song to the community on this forum ?

Take care,

Joined: 02/23/2022 - 22:23
I've only just discovered

I've only just discovered Caustic. I've been exploring the forums and I came across your question. It's hard to believe that no one has answered it. I'll give it a try.

In short, your compositions are yours and you have copyright to them. Your composition consists of the melody, which are the notes and organizing rhythms, and lyrics (if applicable). As long as your melody is not a copy of another composition for which you do not own the copyright, you can share, sell, broadcast or perform your composition.

This is the basics of music law. Your specific question is about using sounds on an instrument in your compositions. This can be more complicated, however I'll try to keep it simple.

The sound an instrument makes is not subject to copyright. No one owns the sound of a trumpet or drum. This is also generally true of electronic instruments. You are allowed to use the factory presets of any synthesizer without additional cost or license. Electronic musical instrument manufacturers would not be able to sell many products if one couldn't use them directly for musical composition without additional cost. They want their products used in recordings and performances to create demand for the products they sell.

Where this becomes complicated is in sampling. Fortunately this was all sorted in the 1980s after the first commercial samplers were sold.

Since samples are recordings of performances as well as instruments, these recordings are subject to copyright. Even if the recording is not of an instrumnent, let's say it is a recording of a train or birds singing, the person that created the recording owns the copyright and you need permission from the copyright owner in order to use it. The companies that sold samplers also provided a license to use the samples freely as part of the cost of the sampler.

These companies and others also sold sample libraries. Each of those had a licensing agreement which specified the terms of use of the library. For most of the companies, the license said the end user could freely incorportate these samples into their composistions but they couldn't resell the samples in any form, altered or not. For other sample libraries the terms could require that additional fees or an additional license be purchased in order to use them in a commercial recording. That is a recording that is sold or broadcast.

Incidently, also in the 1980s people started selling synthesizer patches of sounds. These were also treated like samples in that in some cases a license was required to use the sounds in these patches on a commercial recording. While sound patch libraries are still available, usually the major restriction is that you can't resell the patches. You can use them in your compositions and in commercial recordings. You can also use them as a starting point for your own custom patches.

OK, so finally we come to the answer to your question. The sounds in Caustic are free to use in your compositions. However, if you create a sound in Caustic using a sample from a sample library that requires additional licensing requirements, you may not be able to distribute, or broadcast that recording until you meet those requirements.

Just so you know, being someone who "puts notes and arrange again and again" is the definition of music composer. The unique arrangemnet of notes and rhythms forms the melody which becomes a composition for which you own copyright.

Rest easy. Your songs are yours. If you use samples, make sure they are license-free and royalty-free. If you're not sure about a sample, then it might be better make your own samples if possible. Just don't use copyrighted material as your sound source.

If you want to share your music you can attach a Caustic Song file to your forum post or put the song on a site like Soundcloud or YouTube. How to do that is beyond the scope of this post, but the information is available.