Interview: S3RL On Collecting Worldwide Royalties

May 5, 2016

S3RL (aka Jole Hughes) is a producer, DJ and musician based in Brisbane, Queensland who caters to a dedicated  base of house and rave music fans. Specializing in ‘UK hardcore’, a genre that evolved over the ’90s as house and techno music took on more complex layers, beats and breakdowns, S3RL has released and distributed dozens of singles via TuneCore since 2011. Around that time, he established EMFA Music, his own label, and beyond needing a distribution partner, S3RL was seeking publishing administration support as well.

Given his location, a widespread fan base, and the need to collect worldwide royalties from his songs, we’re psyched that S3RL calls TuneCore his publishing and distribution home! We got the chance to interview the busy producer and catch up on how publishing administration has been a vital part of his musical journey so far:

What made you curious about TuneCore’s Publishing Administration services initially?

 S3RL: When I first established my label, I needed a distributor and after researching a few companies TuneCore came out on top by far. The publishing administration TuneCore offers is the best there is for what I’m looking for.

How were you collecting and managing your songwriter royalties before becoming a TuneCore Music Publishing Administration client?

I was doing it all manually myself. I had multiple labels to deal with and even more stores to keep track of.

Were there any surprising sources of revenue that you discovered upon entering into a publishing deal with TuneCore?

Well, most recently it would be YouTube.  I knew there would be a decent income from YouTube but no where near as much as it ended up being.

How important is the ability to collect royalties internationally to you?

Very important. My main fanbase is overseas so getting international coverage is vital.

What has been the most lucrative publishing revenue stream for you?

Overall it would be iTunes, then followed by Spotify.

How has the royalty collection contributed to the momentum or development of your musical career?

It has been a very important contribution. I’ve been able to focus more on aspects of music I would have normally had to put aside thanks to TuneCore taking care of the ‘paperwork’ side of things.

What kind of trends do you see when it comes to publishing among artists in the UK hardcore scene?

A lot of arists in my (relatively small) scene are trying to cover these aspects themselves. I have recomended TuneCore to a lot of them and they have all agreed it’s the way to go.

What’s an educational tidbit you’d share with independent artists who may be confused by music publishing?

I’m still confused about publishing myself so I’m probably the last person to ask when it comes to educating others about it. I’ve always seen it as the part of producing that ‘I don’t want to know about’ [laughs]. That’s another reason why I’m with TuneCore.

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