The agency issues mechanical licenses (licences to record music in an audio recording) to most Canadian record companies and synchronization licences (licences to record music in an audio visual recording) to broadcasters, film, and television producers. By 1990 CMRRA was issuing more than 60,000 licences per year. It also undertakes litigation on behalf of its publishers and in 1990 won a court case (Bishop voices Telemetropole) before the Supreme Court of Canada which established the independent existence of synchronization rights as distinct from performing rights. This decision affirmed that broadcaster-created television programs would be subject to the same requirements as those produced by independent program producers.
In addition to its licensing and litigation functions, CMRRA collects royalties and distributes them to copyright holders, conducts audits of record companies to find unpaid royalties, collect and distribute them, and represents Canadian music publishers in Great Britain, Europe, Japan, the USA, the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Australia, and New Zealand. The agency also acts as a lobby group for copyright reform.
CMRRA is a founding member of the Coalition of Canadian Copyright Creator and Owners. Its offices are in Toronto. In 1991 its directors included John Bird, Mark Altman of Morning Music Ltd., George Ullmann of Boosey & Hawkes (Canada) Ltd, and Jerry Renewych of Warner/Chappell Music Ltd; the general manager was David Basskin.
In francophone Canada, similar responsibilities are looked after by SODRAC. This agency was founded in 1970 as SDRM Canada Inc, a subsidiary of the French rights agency SDEM. In 1985 the Canadian agency became independent of the parent group and changed its name to SODRAC.
Author Barbara Norman
Berry, Paul 'CMRRA takes stock as it celebrates first decade,' CanComp, 216, Dec 1986
Links to Other Sites
Search for album details, audio and video clips, and special features about your favourite classical performers at the ANALEKTA website.
Canadian Music Publishers Association
The website for the CMPA, an association that represents and promotes the interests of Canadian music publishers. Check this site for the latest industry news and surveys, notes about copyright issues, and more.
Music Creators Glossary
A glossary of terms associated with music publishing in Canada. From the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada.
The Canadian Music Industry
This website provides a concise overview of the music industry in Canada, including its structure, trends and outlook. From the Department of Canadian Heritage.
Shawnadithit grew anxious waiting for her uncle, Longnon, to return to camp at the junction of Badger Brook and the Exploits River, deep in the wilds of Newfoundland...