What Is Confidential Records?
- Confidential Records was established in 1980 and now specialises in enabling musicians to get their
music into major online stores & streaming services, Worldwide.
These include iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play, Amazon, Bandcamp, Tidal, and many more.
Confidential Records collects royalties & payments and sends 90% of these earnings to artists, we can also handle all publishing aspects through our publisher, Maori Music Publishing, enabling us to promote your music through Sync Promo, BBC Introducing and MusicBrainz etc.
How Much Does It Cost?
- Release campaigns start at just £15.00 for singles, £25.00 for eps and £35.00 for albums.
Ringtones can be distributed from just £17.50.
Who Owns My Music?
- You do.
Whilst you authorise us to be exclusive licensee of your music, you keep 100% ownership and control of it, being able to set your retail price, select retail outlets specifically, allow us to promote and licence your music for commercial exploitation etc.
Can I Release Music On My Own Label / Imprint?
- Yes - absolutely!
Whilst the default label option is Confidential Records (UK) Ltd, you have the option to have your release/s shown as being on your own label / imprint name - simply enter this in the appropriate place on the distribution submission form.
How Long Does It Take For My Music To Be Available In Stores?
- We recommend that if you're aiming for a specific guaranteed release date to coincide with Press /
Radio / TV Promotional Campaigns that you request a release date at least 30 days in advance,
- iTunes : Anywhere from same-day to a week.
- Amazon : About 2-4 days
- Bandcamp : About a day.
- Google Play : About a day.
- Spotify : Usually a week or so.
- Beats Music, Deezer : About 1-2 weeks.
- YouTube Music : About 1-3 days.
- TIDAL : About a week.
- Other Stores : About 1-4 weeks.
(A percentage of releases undergo manual review at Apple, which can take an additional 3-14 days).
What Stores Will My Music Appear In?
- Apple Music
- Google Play
- MediaNet (150+ outlets)
- Microsoft Groove (formerly Xbox and Zune)
- YouTube Music
Must My Music Be Published?
- Yes - In Most Cases.
All original music for release must be published through a recognised music publisher.
Maori Music Publishing can handle all aspects of publishing for you.
The only exception to this would be if you ar a writer-member of any Performing Rights Organisation (eg. PRS / BMI / SOCAN etc) and wish to handle all publishing aspects yourself, although this is generally not recommended.
See also the sections on Cover Songs or Public Domain material.
Can I Release Cover Songs?
Confidential Records will obtain the required compulsory mechanical licence for you.
(There is a surcharge levied for this of £10.00 per annum / per track).
NOTE: No reference to the original artist should appear on your artwork or in the track title or band name.
Can I Use Public Domain Material?
- Yes - but be careful!
Sometimes songs you feel should be classed as "traditional" or in the Public Domain are still in copyright and may, for example, be still administered by the original composer's estate so be considered to be a "cover" version.
If in doubt, contact us to clarify the position.
Can My Release Contain Samples?
Confidential Records can help with covers but cannot help with samples or obtaining legal clearance for the use of these.
Any submission containing samples will be refused distribution and any submitted fees refunded in full less a 10% administration charge.
What's the difference?
A cover song is a song that you performed & recorded yourself, but that was written by someone else.
For example, when your band plays "Smooth Criminal" (written by Michael Jackson).
This is OK - Confidential Records makes it easy and legal to sell cover songs.
Just select "Cover Version" on the Confidential Records upload form.
NOTE: You should not include the original artist's name in the title or on your artwork.
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.
Can I Send Demos?
- Yes - But they have to be good!
Confidential Records always likes to hear new, original music, but these must be studio quality recordings and you preferably have to be playing "live" on a regular basis.
We regret that we cannot consider published material other than through Maori Music Publishing.
See our website for full details of how to submit your music to us.
Do You Offer Advances?
- Yes we do!
Confidential Records can offer existing clients a Cash Advance on the release of their second plus STD / DBL ALBUM if they are distributed for FIVE years.
The advance will be based on 50% of the nett sales value of the preceding release.
NOTE : Minimum Nett Sales value must be £200
Can I Change A Release Once It's Uploaded?
You can't change a release (either audio or artwork) after it's uploaded - but you can request deletion and then re-submit a corrected version as a new release.
If you want to make a change (add a track, amend spelling, change cover art etc.,) you'll have to request deletion of the release and then upload the amended version as a new release.
There can be no refund of original release fees if you opt to do this.
You'll still get paid for any purchases of your deleted release made before it was deleted.
Can I Add Or Delete A Song From A Release?
The only way to do this is to delete the old release then re-submit it again as a new release, with all the tracks you want on it.
Can I Change Where My Music Is Available?
- Yes and No.
You can select outlets prior to release that you'd like your music to be available in, but the only way to do this is after your release is 'live' is to delete the old version and then re-submit it again as a new release.
My Music Is Showing On Another Artists Page on Spotify, can you help to separate it?
Yes - we can help!
Spotify sometimes groups artists together who have the same (or similar) names.
If Spotify has grouped you with someone else (or if they haven't grouped all of your albums together), just contact us and we'll sort your own Artist Page out for you!
Similar checks are made on the Apple / iTunes Store prior to release to limit the chances of your music being shown on another Artists Page.
Can I Select Specific Countries Where My Release is Available?
All releases will be available Worldwide.
Can I Have Pre-Orders on My Release?
We set this up for you for free with iTunes, Amazon, Bandcamp and Google Play on request.
How Much Of My Sales Do I Get?
- Most outlets will deduct approximately 33% from all sales revenues as their commission and
Confidential Records makes a 10% administration charge on all receipts.
This means that for each single song sale valued at £0.79 you will receive approximately £0.48.
Streamed music (on outlets such as Spotify and Apple Music) generate much lower levels of return (typically £0.001 per play).
How And When Do I Get Paid?
- Payment is made to UK Clients by either PayPal or Bank Transfer and to International Clients by either
PayPal or Wire Transfer.
Your money will be sent within a few days of the first Monday of every month, provided your earnings exceed GBP£10.00. The minimum accountable royalty is one penny.
(For International Clients using Wire Transfer, the minimum distribution level is GBP£50.00).
If they are lower than this they will be "rolled over" until they reach that figure.
(Additional digital royalties may be also allocated within our quarterly Publishing Performance Royalty distributions in APRIL, JULY, OCTOBER and DECEMBER and / or our quarterly Reconciliation Publishing Royalty distributions in FEBRUARY, MAY, AUGUST and NOVEMBER).
Sales reports & payments are available to you as soon as we receive the sales numbers from stores.
Stores usually deliver these reports monthly, and they reflect sales from about three months ago.
So a song you sold yesterday won't be reflected for about 3 months, that's how long it takes before stores send us (or any distributor) the information.
Each store & streaming service delivers reports & payments on their own schedule.
So, for example, you likely won't receive updated iTunes & Spotify numbers on the same day.
The same thing goes for different distributors - if you have other music online via a distributor other than Confidential Records, that distributor may reflect your Spotify (and so on) numbers before or after we do.
We generally don't recommend duplication of distribution though - there's only ONE iTunes!
HMRC / IRS Income Tax Returns
Remember to declare royalty income to HMRC / IRS to ensure your tax returns are correct.
Please make sure that you declare any income from sales royalties when completing your tax return for the year. You can do this via the HMRC / IRS website, via your tax advisor (if you have one) or by contacting HMRC / IRS directly.
If you have already submitted your tax return, but have income from sales royalties that you have not declared, you will need to amend your return. You can do this by any of the ways mentioned above.
If you have any questions please contact HMRC / IRS.
Unfortunately we are unable to advise on any HMRC / IRS related queries.
ISRC / Barcode Details
Do I Need To Know What An ISRC Code or UPC / EAN Barcode Is?
But if you do, then these are codes that the music industry uses for identifying specific releases and tracks.
Confidential Records takes care of these automatically (generates them, associates them with your music, etc.) so you don't have to think about it.
Focus on your music and leave the technical things to us!
Does Confidential Records Provide ISRC Codes?
An ISRC code is a unique code assigned to each song you upload.
Confidential Records will automatically generate new ISRC codes and associate them with every song you upload for distribution.
It's free and automatic and you don't have to worry about it.
If you want to specify your own IRSC codes, make sure you enter them on the upload form.
If you want ISRC Codes for a release elsewhere, we can still provide them - free of charge - just complete the appropriate ISRC Request Form from our website.
I Already have a Barcode And ISRC Codes, Can I Use Them?
- ISRC codes, yes; Barcodes, no.
Confidential Records automatically generates UPC / EAN Barcodes and ISRC codes for each release, so you don't have to think about it (or even know what that means).
If you do want to specify your own ISRC codes for some reason, that's easy to do - make sure you enter them on the upload form.
There is currently no way to specify a custom UPC / EAN Barcode.
Do I Need To Provide a Barcode Or ISRC Codes?
You do not need to provide a Barcode or ISRC codes to Confidential Records.
Can I Get My ISRC Codes Before I Upload My Music?
Confidential Records gives you free ISRC codes and these can be given to you after distribution has been arranged if required, but we can also provide you with ISRC codes even if you aren't distributing your music through us.
Just complete the appropriate ISRC Request Form from our website.
How Is My Release Promoted?
- Provided you are published through Maori Music Publishing, you can opt to let us submit your release
to the BBC Introducing Network to kick-start your promotional campaign and we also create a
MusicBrainz profile and ReverbNation entry for you, free of charge.
We also offer clients an optional Radio Promo Service through Jango Radio - see our Promotion page for details.
We are not specialist promoters, however, and more specific promotion (Radio "Plugging", Press Campaigns etc.), are more specialised fields and you can find details of companies who may be able to assist you with that HERE.
What About Sync Promo?
More details about Sync Promo for releases can be found HERE.
Renewals & Cancellations
How Is My Release Renewed?
- At the end of your chosen one, two or five year release campaign we'll contact you with the option to
renew distribution for another one, two or five years.
There is no obligation to extend distribution and if you decide not to then your release will be deleted from sale at that time.
How Can I Delete My Release?
Please note that there can be no refunds given for any "unused" part of your distribution fee.
Confidential Records UK Ltd
Bus. Reg. No.: 6820545
PRS For Music : 159804347
MCPS : 159804347
PPL : 102463585
SoundExchange : 1000017931
Music Reports : MD52003