Apple continues to work to add features to its Apple Music service, and today it has announced a new partnership with Dubset Media Holdings to stream thousands of remixed songs and DJ mixes, both based on original recordings. Such works were previously unavailable due to copyright issues.
Dubset is a digital distributor that delivers content to digital music services. But unlike other digital distributors, Dubset will use a proprietary technology called MixBank to analyze a remix or long-form DJ mix file, identify recordings inside the file, and properly pay both record labels and music publishers.
Dubset CEO Stephen White told Billboard that a single mix could have upward of 600 different rights holders involved, making it incredibly complex to license them. White said a typical mix has 25 to 30 songs that require payments to 25 to 30 record labels, and two to ten publishers for each track.
Mixbank compares and matches recordings used in a remix or DJ mix against a database of three-second audio snippets from Gracenote. White says the fingerprinting method is a “brute force” tool, which can provide up to 100 possible matches for each three-second snippet. The final step in matching is performed by MixScan, which identifies the recording, and its position in each mix, and then finds corresponding rights holders in its dataset.
Rights holders can blacklist an artist, album, or track, or create a rule to limit the length of a song to be used in a remix or mix. Rights holders can also prevent their content form being associated with certain other artists, as well as controlling which territories get which content. An optional review process at the end allows rights holders to give final approval before a mix or remix is distributed.
Labels are discovering licensed mixes as a whole new revenue stream. “The goal is to bring this to all 400 distributors worldwide. When you think about unlocking these millions of hours of content being created, it’s significant monetization for the industry,” says White.