What is a music licence?

Recorded music is protected by copyright.  This means that, if you wish to include recorded music in a radio or TV broadcast, or in an online service, or if you wish to play recorded music in public (such as playing it to staff or customers at your business premises), legal permission is needed from each and every recording rightsholder whose recordings you use.

PPL’s licences provide this permission on behalf of the tens of thousands of recording rightsholders we represent, allowing you to use virtually all commercially-released recordings in the UK. This saves you from having to contact multiple companies or individuals directly.

What do you need a licence for?

Broadcasting music on the radio

If you include recorded music in a radio broadcast, you will usually need a PPL licence.

More about radio broadcast licensing

Broadcasting music on TV

If you want to use recorded music in your TV broadcast, you will usually need a PPL licence.

More about TV broadcast licensing

Broadcasting music online

PPL licenses a range of online broadcasting services to use recorded music.

More about online licensing

Broadcasting or playing music videos in public

We offer licences to broadcast or play music videos in public through our sister company VPL.

Learn more about VPL

Playing music in public

In 2018, PPL and PRS for Music launched a joint venture, PPL PRS Ltd, to manage TheMusicLicence.

More about playing music in public

Copying music for playing in public

PPL licenses the commercial copying of recorded music by specialist companies that supply music systems to businesses for the playing of recorded music. This type of copying of music is sometimes also known as “dubbing”.

Learn more about dubbing

We make sure the revenue flows back to our members

After deduction of our operating costs, your licence fee is distributed to the performers and recording rightsholders we represent. Having invested their time, talent and money to make recorded music, they are entitled to a fair payment when it is broadcast or played in public. We do not retain a profit for our services.

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