Bjorn Lynne music appearing in thousands of productions - what's up with that?
Today I received an email from Assad, who had come across my music in a game called SolarMax (I've never even heard of this game before, but that's not unusual) and he had done a little bit of research and found that the same music tracks were up for sale / licensing via the royalty-free music website Shockwave-Sound.com for only $30. So he was wondering - is this really the case? Can people really take my music and put it in their game... and pay only $30??
I wrote him an answer and I thought I'd share it here, since I'm often asked about this.
It's true, it is possible to legally license my music, for use in games and other commercial products, for prices starting from only $30. I have made my living on this for many years now. For the last 12 years I have made myself a good income with this business model. Actually, prices start from $30 but if you want to use the music for “bigger” projects, you have to buy the Mass Market License, which costs 2.5 x the amount of the Standard License. So if you see $30, that means the Standard License costs $30 and the Mass Market License costs $30 x 2.5 = $75.
SolarMax - Just one of thousands of
games and apps with Bjorn Lynne music
I own and manage Shockwave-Sound.com and we are working with about 300 composers who have their music sold via this site. We sell many, many licenses each day. After 12 years of having my music licensed like this, I have got my music used in maybe over 50,000 different projects (films, games, commercials, web sites, YouTube videos, installation, trade show / corporate videos, etc. etc.). Most of them, I don’t even know about. Sometimes I surprisingly come across my own music in some video game, iPhone / Android App, etc.
It may sound like $30 is a very small price to license music, but remember, it’s the same music that gets licensed by several hundred other customers, so this customer is not getting unique music. He/she only gets to use the music that potentially hundreds of other people are also using in their projects. I’m making a lot of money on this and I’ve made great success. So… I’m pretty happy with that!
Plus, it's kind of cool to come across my own music here and there, whether I'm watching a film like Respire (where I surprisingly heard some of my music in the background to one of the scenes in the movie) or playing a game like Vertigo on the Wii, where I also surprisingly recognized my own music.
It's been quite a long time since I posted any news on this blog, but that's just because I've been working on my music and my music publishing business. Anyway, I am now happy to announce the release of my first new CD album release for 3 years: New Tech Haven.
This album contains 12 tracks which I've picked out from the 40 or so tracks that I have produced over the past couple of years. I chose some tracks that I felt would fit nicely together as an album that would be quite mixed, but also somewhat coherent and make up a nice listening experience from start to finish. I guess you guys will be the ones to judge whether I managed it. :-)
The music is a combination of electronic, energetic, ambient, fantasy, sci-fi and technology inspired electro.
You can listen to the whole album from start to finish in low sound quality on this page. From here you can also find links to buy the album as a CD or as a download in high quality MP3 or FLAC.
From time to time I'm asked about music that I composed for the many different "Worms" games from 1995 until 2006 when I worked as a composer of video games for Team17 Software.
To keep this music from "dying out" I've now made a lot of it - maybe not all of it, but everything that I still had on backups and that I could make sense of, arrange and present in nice and tidy way, and that sounded ok as music in its own right, outside the scope of the game.
I invested a huge amount of creative effort in all that Worms music through the years, so it's with pleasure that I'm able to present it on my website now, so that the music can "live on" and be heard by fans of the games, and the music itself.
Just a kind of demo video for the music track "Digital Concepts" by Bjorn Lynne (c) 2010.
I made this track in a couple of days in November 2010. It's nothing big or important, just a sort of electronic groove/tech or whatever you would call it, with some piano leads and a little bit of electric guitar strings here and there.
The music has not yet been released on CD, but the track is available to license for use in commercial and non-commercial projects, video/film, games/YouTube, multimedia/Flash/websites etc. If you want to use this track in any project such as this, you can buy the track from www.Shockwave-Sound.com and that purchase includes a License to use the track for such projects. It's "Royalty-Free" music, so you don't pay any royalties based on sales, views, anything like that. Just a one-time license fee.
It's the first of December 2010 - Winter has come to southern Norway, and I felt inspired to write and record this little music track which I called "White Fields". It's nothing big or important, just a little track with some synth washes, a chilled rhythm and some clean electric guitar licks with lots of reverb.
The photos are all taken by me, most of them yesterday, but a couple are from last winter, and they are all from around my neighbourhood, where I live, here in a small town called Stavern, about 100 km south of Oslo.
Well, I hope you'll enjoy it. Feel free to share it, spread this video link, etc. etc.
If you would like to license this music track for use in your own project, be it a game, video, YouTube, film, multimedia, any kind of project at all, then you can buy a license from www.Shockwave-Sound.com (search for "White Fields" in the search field there) and you get a license to legally use the track in your own media.
Today I'm announcing a new promotion in which you can earn yourself a completely free, autographed, Bjorn Lynne CD or DVD, just by writing an article about one of my web services / online stores that I'm trying to promote online. In short terms, you will write something online, an article or blog post, about a somehow relevant subject, and in that article or blog post, you will link to one or both of my two sites: Shockwave-Sound.com (Royalty-Free Music, Stock Music), and/or 1SoundFX.com (Buy and download sound effect files). And in return for you writing about one/both of my services and linking to it/them, thus helping to create a "buzz" about these sites, I will show my appreciation by sending you a free Bjorn Lynne CD - autographed - as a completely free gift from me to you.
To read all the details and requirements, please check this page.
This is just a video I put together to put some images to my latest music composition: "Outback Ramble". I felt that this music went well together with scenes of nature, forest, outdoors and relaxing natural scenes, so I used stock footage from Redwood National Forest, which I have licensed from FootageFirm.com.
The music was composed, recorded and produced over two days in early November 2010 in my home studio. There are about 4 layers of my acoustic guitar and the rest is programmed. At about 10 seconds in you can see a photo that shows how I set up the guitar recording. I have two microphones placed about 30 cm from each other and record those two mic's left/right for a nice, natural stereo sound on the guitar. The two microphones aren't identical, but in my opinion, they don't have to be. The guitar I'm using is a Crafter "jumbo body" acoustic that I bought about 15 years ago; I like the sound of it. It has built-in pickups and a jack plug, but I never use it. I don't like the sound of acoustic guitar recorded with built-in pickups. In my experience, it sounds "tinny", compressed and unnatural. For me, the best way to record an acoustic guitar is always with two microphones placed in front of the guitar. If you want a more "distant", roomier sound, you simply sit further from the microphones. If you want a really "up-close" sound, it's a no-brainer, you simply move up and sit really close to the microphones. :-)
Well, I hope you like the track. If you would like to license this track for use in a project of your own, you can buy a license from www.Shockwave-Sound.com (just search for the track title "Outback Ramble" there). Or if you are interested in hearing more of my music for just personal listening, please see my personal website www.LynneMusic.com . You can also buy my CD's from iTunes or from www.cdbaby.com/group/bjornlynne
Using my music for a school, hobby or non-profit project?
Today I received a message from a guy who wanted to know if he could use one of my free MP3 download tracks in his school video project. It's completely non-profit and he was going to give me proper credits for the music etc. of course. And when the video was finished, he was going to upload it to YouTube so that I, and everybody else, could see the finished video there. So he wanted to know if he could use my music for free, for this purpose.
I get this type of questions quite regularly, so I wanted to share the answer here, in case somebody else are interested in knowing how I look at this issue:
Answer from Bjorn:
Hi, thanks for your email.
I'm totally okay with you using my music (for free) for a school project. That's no problem. But when you start talking about distributing the video via YouTube, it's not so simple any more. YouTube use may seem "non commercial" to you, but YouTube use is in fact highly commercial and very widely distributed. When you upload a video to YouTube, you are giving YouTube all rights to all content in that video, and that includes the music. It will be distributed on the world's most visited website, and YouTube can do anything else they like with the video, and with the music that's used in it. And basically I'm not willing to allow that to happen without me getting a license payment. The music can be licensed for YouTube use for $29.95 (even less for shorter versions of the track), from Shockwave-Sound.com. I hope this sounds reasonable.
If you take away the YouTube distribution and use the music only for your actual school project, you can do that free of charge. No problem.
It's been a while since I posted anything on this blog. I have been guilty of neglecting this blog a little bit, I think partially because I've started to use my Facebook profile page to just post little messages, quick news etc. I don't know, for some reason it kind of feels that I need to have some kind of big important news, before I'll make a new post on my email newsletter mailing list or on this blog. So, if you're interested in quick, non-important news from me, feel free to hook me up as a friend on Facebook.
By the way, here is a recent photo of me and my daughter. I hadn't posted any new photos of myself for years, so just to connect a bit better, I decided to put this photo here, to show you guys what I, and my little girl, look like in 2010. :-)
New music tracks
These days, when I compose new music tracks, the purpose is mostly to license them out through my stock music (royalty-free music) catalogue. I don't think so much in terms of "albums" or "CD's" any more. It's more about adding the new tracks to my ever growing collection of "library music" - in other words, music that can be licensed for use in games, videos, film, websites, multimedia etc.
None of these tracks are available to buy on any Bjorn Lynne CD yet, but some of them may appear on future Bjorn Lynne CD releases, who knows...
First up is Ice Planet - I guess you could say that this is a track in the old-school electronic style of music like in my early years (1988-1995?). The track is quite long and has a very synth / fantasy / scifi sound and it's a little bit similar in style to the music I used to make on the Amiga and Protracker, all those years ago. In fact, back in 1992 or so I made a track on Amiga called "Father Nature" and in this track, Ice Planet, the main theme from that old 1992 track Father Nature makes a visit. :-)
Next out is Spectral Waves where I've also tried to go for a sort of "cold", "icy" sound but with a bit more "tech" feel to it:
Then we have Dreamy Days where I wanted to go for a sort of "friendly, light pop" sound because in my experience, this type of music is quite often licensed for use in commercials, corporate video, video presentations and other multimedia presentations:
The next track, Synchro Express, I guess is a little bit back to the old-school electronic / techno style, but not really too hard techno. Kind of like the music we used to make on the Amiga back in the day. :-) Again, I find that this kind of music is regularly licensed for use in casual video games, on-screen presentations and animations of various types etc., so I wanted to create a track that could be a success within a stock music catalogue and be licensed many times to customers making various forms of multimedia:
And last out today is a new track that I literally finished this morning, it's called Fantasy Exploration #2 and it's pretty much directly made to be used within fantasy games, adventure games, RPG games and similar productions. The music is not too light, not too dark, not too loud, not too quiet, not too sad, not too happy, and otherwise I guess fairly "neutral" :-) It's made with the purpose of just creating a general background atmosphere / mood while exploring new lands and new areas in adventure / fantasy games. The track plays for 7 minutes and contains no repetition at all during this time, so you can play this track in a loop (for example, within a game) for quite a long time without it becoming too repetitive:
And yes, if you guessed from the "#2" in the title of this track, you may have guessed that I have in fact previously made a "Fantasy Exploration #1", and you would be correct. :-) That track is also available.
If you or somebody you know should be interested in licensing any of these tracks for use in YouTube videos, games, websites, multimedia etc., then just go to www.Shockwave-Sound.com where you can buy a license for $29.95 (less for shortened versions) and for that money you get to download the track, and you get a license document that proves your right to exploit that music track commercially and in-public, and to distribute the track within your own creation (video, film, game, etc.). Take note though, that the license does not give you a right to distribute the music by itself, as music. It only gives you a right to use the music within some kind of project like a film, game, animation etc., and then to distribute that final product. I hope you all understand the difference between that, and simply re-distributing the music itself.
Why so hugely different prices for Bjorn Lynne music?
Today I received an email from a person who'd heard my music "Under the Sea" in a YouTube video and he had searched around a bit and found that this music track was available for about $8 (it's a whole single-track album of 60 minutes) from some places, but also available for $49.95 from another site. So he wrote to the "expensive" site (Shockwave-Sound.com) and asked why we were selling something for $49.95 when the same thing was available elsewhere for $8?
I found out about Bjorn Lynne's Under the Sea song via a video made of World of Warcraft (involving an underwater scene). I found it quite beautiful. The person that made the video told a commenter which song it was and linked here:
Surprised at the $49.95 price tag for the 60 minute version, I did some searching and found the same 60 minute track on the composer's own website for only $8.00. Quite a price difference I just thought you'd like to know about the incredible price differential and how easy it was to find the $8.00 version: http://www.google.com/search?hl=&q="Under+the+Sea"+bjorn+lynne
Thanks for reading.
Thanks very much for your email. My name is Bjorn Lynne and I'm the composer of the music track you heard (and many others).
The difference in pricing is because of totally different rights you get with your purchase. To purchase the track just to listen to it, the price is around $8. It can be bought from my own personal website www.lynnemusic.com and other places like CDBaby, etc.
If you buy the track at Shockwave-Sound.com for $49.95 you get more than just the rights to listen to it. You get the rights to use this music in a public or commercial project. With this purchase, you don't just get the music download, you also get a License Document with your name and address on it, and this document shows that you have the rights to use this music within your own project, such as a film, Youtube film, DVD/game, broadcast, theater play, telephone on-hold music, etc. etc. (You can see all the rights you get, by looking at the License page at Shockwave-Sound) And you don't have to pay me (the composer) ANY royalties for this type of use. That's what you get for the one-time $49.95 purchase, and that's why we say that this site (Shockwave-Sound.com) is selling royalty-free music.
That's a huge difference from the $8.00 purchase which only gives you the rights to listen to the music on your personal music system.
Through my website www.Shockwave-Sound.com which sells music licenses for use of music in media projects, I'm able to see various "sales trends" throughout the year. I have customers from all over the world, including USA, Canada, Japan, Australia, Europe/EU, and Scandinavia (Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland) etc. etc.
One statistical phenomenon that really stands out to me is that during the summer period (say, late June until mid August), nearly ALL sales to Scandinavian customers dry up completely, whereas the sales to the rest of the world continues more or less as normal.
My typical customer is a person who works in an office, perhaps a small business. It would seem to me that whilst most of the world's offices continue more or less as per normal through the summer holiday period, Scandinavian people simply aren't working during the summer. To Swedes, Norwegians, Danes and Finnish people, holidays are sacred!
Personally I work straight through summer, but that's just one of the realities of being all alone in a one-man company in a hard marketplace. My business simply couldn't survive just shutting down for 2 months. If nothing else, they'd be nobody here to answer customer emails or do the accounting. That's clearly not acceptable.
I have to say that sometimes I envy people who just work 8-16 in an office and don't have any responsibility to the business as a whole (or even work in the public sector). They can take their 8 weeks of holiday and really relax without a worry in the world. And us (them) Scandinavians really know how to do that!