Tomorrow: Songwriter Showdown!

Tomorrow (Friday), at 9PM, CSA will host the first Songwriter Showdown at Columbus Oktoberfest. This is a tournament style event for any songwriters in Columbus, judged by representatives of the Columbus arts community. Find us tomorrow on the Cabaret Stage, pictured below as “CSA”.

Oktoberfest Map

John Schwab Recording Studios has donated 5 free recording hours to our grand prize winner this year. Other prizes will be announced tomorrow night.

For last minute sign ups, email us at or visit   for more information.

Justin Vernon: Best Song and Throw Away

I just watched this weathered musician, Justin Vernon, sing a rendition of “I Can’t Make You Love Me”. It’s the most incredible cover I’ve ever heard.

65,000 people “like” this video on YouTube, 1,000 people “dislike” it. Personally, I couldn’t believe 1,000 people disliked it. So I started reading the comments below the video. They span from “Perfection. Makes me weep every time I hear it. Beautiful.” to “He looks like a terrorist and sings like a woman. He sounds like Julia Childs and I can’t stop laughing.”

Even great songwriters and popular artists shoulder criticism! No matter what, keep going!

Paying Attention to PROs


I haven’t had the opportunity to talk with many of you about my perspectives on Performing Rights Organizations, the powers at be who facilitate performance royalties.

For those of you who have never received a royalty on your work, I’ll break the concept down into simple terms: When you perform, you have put your original work out in public. If it’s copyrighted and registered with a performing rights organization, the government says you deserve a royalty for your performance. Money. This works the same way for radio, which is also considered a “public performance”.

Performing rights organizations ask businesses to pay a fee to play music to the public. This is a “blanket license” fee. Basically, in order for musicians to get paid a royalty, the PROs have to charge someone, so they can payout what the government says is due to copyright holders (songwriters). Companies like Muzika provide some ways around this fee, making it easier for business without a stage to get legal.

Now, for the sake of learning, I’m going to leave this post right here. If you’re a songwriter who is trying to get paid for your music, the questions below will be a good exercise in “getting current” on changes happening in the music industry. If you’d like, email your responses to and we can talk more. If not, hopefully you’ve learned something new, already. Keep writing!

1. What are two ways performing rights organizations can find out which businesses have not paid their performance licensing fees?

2. How do performing rights organizations determine which songwriters get paid, and how much?

3. What would be the advantage of BMI, ASCAP, or SESAC enticing a popular artist to register with them, as opposed to another PRO?

4. What’s the process for “leaving” a PRO after registering?

5. Who is Global Music Rights, and why am I asking?

Independents’ Day Festival Busking Opportunity!

A Unique Busking Experience

Independents’ Day Festival (September 20th and 21st) is an annual Columbus Festival that exists ‘to celebrate and develop independent culture, commerce and creativity.’  CSA has been working hand in hand with the festival organizers to bring you a unique busking opportunity on Saturday September 20th from 12pm-8pm!  There will be 3 distinct “Busking Stations” that are currently being designed by local artists and will serve as your stage for the event.  You will be playing for tips and can play slots ranging from 1-3hrs.  Slots are First Come First Serve, Please fill out the below form!

Songwriter Weekend at Columbus Oktoberfest


Columbus Oktoberfest is having a “songwriter weekend” on Friday, September 26th and Saturday, September 27th.

CSA will host the Songwriter Showcase at Oktoberfest on Saturday, the 27th, from 9PM to 11PM. We’re looking for just 2 more songwriters to participate. Format will be similar to our monthly showcase, but we’re upping the any on the prizes!

Columbus Oktoberfest will host a “Songwriter Showdown” on Friday, September 26th, from 9PM – 11PM. This is a competitive event, with judges. They’re going to select 8-10 more songwriters for this event. Prizes will be announced soon!

Submit to be apart of either of these events, below: