In order release a cover song, you need to obtain a mechanical license - You cannot distribute any content through MusicDigi that you do not hold 100% distribution rights for.
Before releasing a cover song on MusicDigi we suggest you read carefully the information below.
Releasing cover songs:
U.S. copyright law requires you to obtain permission (a mechanical license) from the owners of a song when you record a cover of it, no matter how you use it. This is true even if you are giving away your project for free, or if it's for a non-profit.
Additionally any cover version of an existing work must always respect the "Moral Rights" of the original author or composer.
- respect the copyrights of the original writers by displaying their names in the song credits.
- maintain the integrity of the lyrics and the music.
Using original artist names:
Also important to keep in mind is that a mechanical license does not permit you to use the original artist name who performed the track.
If you are releasing a cover of led zeppelin you may not use "led zeppelin" in your metadata - this name is protected by a trademark and using this name would require an additional license or permission from those controlling the rights to this trademark.
WARNING: Cover songs must not be understood as a Remix. If a Remix or the use Samples (of other songs) are made, it is always required to request the corresponding permission from the owner of the original master (which has been used in part) and from the writers/publishers. In other terms you have to clear Master and Publishing rights for remixing and/or sampling an existing song.
What is the differences?
Sampling is when you use the actual recording of another artist's performance. For example, if you use the 1971 recording of Led Zeppelin's "When The Levee Breaks" as your drum track. That's generally not legal, unless you have permission from the original artist or owner of the copyright.
- Cover Song
A cover song is a song that you performed & recorded yourself, but the music was written by someone else. For example, when your band plays "Blackbird" (written by The Beatles). In order to distribute a cover song (ie: A song you didn't write) you must purchase a license from the owner or administrator of the song in order to use it on your album.
If you intend to distribute your cover song in the US, Canada, Australia...etc, you need to clear the mechanical licenses first.
For that purpose you can use our licensing partner Easy Song Licensing.
More details here: