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*Please note that DMG's fees are due before the commencement of our services

About Mechanical Licensing

The U.S. Copyright Law requires that a mechanical license be obtained for a "cover" record, which is a new release of a previously released Composition. CDs, vinyl, DPDs, and streaming are all considered "Mechanical" uses, stemming from the very first Copyright Act of 1915 which applied to player piano rolls (a "mechanical device"). Title 17 U.S. Code § 115 in the US Copyright Law sets forth the scope of exclusive rights in nondramatic musical works. This is called a Compulsory License for making and distributing phonorecords.

Regarding your cover record, as long it is a true cover and does not fundamentally alter or change the basic melody and/or the lyrics of the original Composition, you may obtain this Compulsory mechanical license without explicit permission of the publisher and songwriters.


Please first go to to see if you are able to obtain the necessary mechanical licenses for all of the shares (%) of the composition you would like to license.

Depending on the song/composition and also the publisher(s) of that composition, however, it may not be possible for you to use Songfile to license all the shares of the composition


In that case, we can step in and handle the entire process for you.

Mechanical Licensing Fees

$500 per mechanical license

Fees include:

  • all licenses for all shares of a single composition*

A flat fee for larger mechanical licensing projects (three or more titles) can also be quoted to you.

​There is an additional $25 technology processing fee for each invoice.

*Sometimes there is a share of the song which is indicated as Copyright Control "CC." This means that the publishing is unknown/unreachable for one of the writers. Since a mechanical license is compulsory (non-negotiable) under Section 115, you have the legal right to release your cover record as long as you show a N.O.I. (Notice of Intent) to procure a mechanical license and pay the U.S. Statutory rate (currently $.12 per unit and $.01 per stream with HFA). We will send out this N.O.I on your behalf.

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