P&E Wing Continues to Focus on Sound Quality and Advocacy for Music Makers
Santa Monica, Calif. — The Recording Academy® Producers & Engineers Wing® continues to illuminate those who labor behind the scenes to create music by highlighting their achievements and educating about best practices. The P&E Wing provides a forum where all recording professionals — from producers, engineers and studio personnel to retailers, manufacturers and educators — can work together to preserve and grow their industry. The P&E Wing has been hard at work, with a busy 2015 and a full itinerary at the 139th AES Convention, including the GRAMMY SoundTables® event titled "After Hours: Mixing for Late Night New York" and the panel "Your Credits, YOUR Money, the new Data Standards and DDEX —What YOU Need to Know!" presented with DDEX (www.ddex.net), an international organization standardizing the music supply chain through the creation of common formats for information communication.
Highlights from the year include the following:
The year kicked off with the 2015 P&E Wing 8th Annual GRAMMY Week® Celebration, which honored legendary producer, songwriter and instrumentalist Nile Rodgers. The gathering was created specifically to honor individuals who strive for audio excellence and, as described by Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow, those who have "championed creative freedom" throughout their career.
The Wing has also been advocating for content creators, producers, engineers, artists and songwriters through the AMP Act and the Fair Play, Fair Pay Act.
- The Allocation for Music Producers Act, or AMP Act (H.R. 1457), will ensure that producers get efficient and direct payment of performance royalties they are due. The bill was formally introduced in Congress in March by Congressmen Joe Crowley (D-N.Y.) and Tom Rooney (R-Fla.) in Washington, D.C. and is supported by SoundExchange, the nonprofit entity that collects and distributes digital performance royalties.
- In April, four members of Congress (House Democrats Jerrold Nadler, John Conyers Jr. and Ted Deutch and Republican House member Marsha Blackburn) introduced the "Fair Play, Fair Pay" Act, which would require terrestrial radio stations to join satellite and internet radio and in making payments to performers for their broadcast on radio. In addition, the act would also require all forms of radio to pay master recordings royalties on music made prior to 1972, and do away with any grandfathering under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act which allowed certain older digital services to pay discounted rates.
Both of these bills are a result of coordinated efforts between The Recording Academy – which first called for a comprehensive, united approach to solving pay inequities for music professionals at GRAMMYs on the Hill in 2014 – and other music stakeholders, including SoundExchange, A2IM, the American Federation of Musicians, SAG-AFTRA, the RIAA, and many others.
During CE Week in New York City in June 2015, the P&E Wing announced that it has embarked upon the creation of a series of Hi-Res Music Production Guidelines, with the goal of further clarifying the technology and techniques essential to producing great high-resolution music. In 2014, a coalition that included the Consumer Electronics Association, Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group and The Recording Academy agreed upon a common definition for Hi-Res Music. However, some misperceptions still remain when it comes to the correct methods for recording, mixing and mastering these titles, resulting in the creation of the Production Guidelines.
Community and networking remain primary to the P&E Wing's agenda, with the production of several dozen networking and professional development events throughout the year, both nationally and in partnership with The Recording Academy's 12 regional Chapters. Highlights have included "P&E Wing In The Studio" in Philadelphia on August 24; a P&E Wing panel at Mix Nashville on August 29; a P&E Wing Listening Session in Lafayette, Louisiana (hosted by the Academy's Memphis Chapter), on September 1; "Art of the Craft: Classical Recording Master Class" in San Francisco on September 22; "GRAMMY Pro: Up Close & Personal with Kaskade" in Atlanta on September 24; and "GRAMMY Pro: futureNOW" in Miami Beach on September 25.