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Letter: Live music expects one more hurdle

The BobbiQue restaurant in Patchogue, is among nine

The BobbiQue restaurant in Patchogue, is among nine Long Island establishments facing suits by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. Photo Credit: Doug Young

The enforcement of regulations of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for the payment of royalties for live and recorded music played in bars and restaurants is tremendously flawed ["Lawsuits on the menu," Business, Oct. 27].

The money cannot be distributed to the correct artists and songwriters because there are no records for which songs were played by the musicians hired by the venue. It's a shakedown. And the fact that it's so arbitrarily enforced makes it even more unfair.

As a musician who has played live music on this Island since 1984, it's one more hurdle for a struggling profession, and one more reason for a club not to hire musicians at all. The fee we receive to play has barely changed in the last 30 years, while the cost of living has gone through the roof. This ASCAP licensing fee could be the final nail in the live-music coffin.

Chris Kinnear, Sea Cliff
 

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