What is a Music Publisher?

A music publisher deals in the marketing and commercial exploitation of songs.   Music publishers regularly handle and control the rights to transcriptions and uses of musical works, and act on behalf of songwriters in matters of distributing royalties and protection against copyright infringement.  The primary job of today's music publisher is to link up new songs by songwriters with suitable recording artists to record them, with the intent of creating a hit record and generating large numbers of sales and airplay.  Promoting such songs, supervising the collection and payment of publishing royalties for sales to their writers, placing writers' songs in other media such as movie soundtracks and commercials, and handling copyright registration and "ownership" matters for published songs, are among other jobs handled by a music publisher. It should be kept in mind, however, that no publisher can promise or guarantee commercial acceptance of a composition as what the publisher does is, when it accepts a composition, will attempt to introduce other artists or other potential users to the song. Whether the artist or potential user accepts the song or the public does is beyond any publisher’s ability to control.