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Pink Floyd and Music Clubs

[Edited and expanded from an Echoes posting] The reason involves song copyrights and band contracts. There are two copyrights for most songs: the (c) copyright for the written music, and the (p) copyright for the recorded music. 99% of the times, the record label owns the (p) copyright. In the band’s record contract, they agree on royalties based on sales of that recorded music — through retail, from licensing to compilation records, from use in movies, etc. The royalty for music club sales is low (only about half the regular amount), and *no* royalty is paid on the units the clubs give away for free (those 12 for 1 deals).

This obviously isn’t a great deal for the band, then. The clubs make their money from volume, the record companies collect their licensing money as usual, but the band gets ripped. Pink Floyd is one of the few bands that are established enough that they both have no need for the promotional benefits a record club offers, and have the leverage to prohibit music club sales in their recording contract. This is why you don’t see any of their albums offered. The only exceptions are items like Roger’s _The Wall: Live in Berlin_ (which was done as a one-off by Polygram), and Syd’s albums (which aren’t nearly the sellers that Floyd albums are).

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