Some important words/terms from the music industry slang

Have you ever been in a situation where people around you are having complex music-related conversation, often referring to words/terms that you have rarely heard of?! And you felt embarrassed to ask what these exactly meant?! Well, we’ve all been in such situation/s at some point of time. The reality is that we can’t know everything about all the things, at all times!

The modern-day world wherein the entire music industry has transitioned to cyberspace, and you have the best music and video streaming apps to listen to your favourite numbers on the move, it is normal to come across such lingo even during online conversations. Here in this short article, we will acquaint you with some such music industry related technical jargon or slang that you should be aware of.

Advanced Audio Coding (AAC)

AAC is the standard encoding and compression scheme, meant to be MP3’s successor. In general, it delivers comparatively better sound quality than the regular MP3 format, and that too at similar or lower bit rates. This is also the standard or the default audio format for platforms like iTunes, iPhone, DivX Plus Web Player, iPad, YouTube, PlayStation 3 and Nintendo. AAC has been adopted in the car audio systems to a certain extent too, especially in case of high-end systems.

Digital Millennium Recording Act (DMCA)

DMCA is a US copyright law which implements couple of 1996 treaties from the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organisation). As per this act, dissemination and production of services, devices or technology with the intent of circumventing the Digital Rights Management (DRM) which control the copyrighted works, is treated as a criminal offence.

Analog format

In case of the Analog recording format, the signals are stored in the form of a continuous wave on or inside the media. The concerned wave is usually stored in the form of a phonograph record physical texture or in the form of a fluctuation inside a magnetic recording’s field strength. Such format is quite different compared to the contemporary digital format, wherein the digital signals get represented in the form of discrete numbers or data.

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Bit Rate

Also commonly referred to as ABR or average bit rate, this is about the amount of data which is normally transferred in every unit of time. It is normally measured in terms of per second in case of digital video or music. To give you an example, an MP3 file whose average bit rate stands at 128 kbit/s normally transfers 128,000 bits per second (on average).

Controlled composition

Some of the contracts entered into with artists featured a controlled composition clause which is applicable to the music that is both written as well as controlled by the corresponding artist. In this case, the record company treats the songs as controlled composition and pays the artist’s publisher a reduced rate (usually 75% of the regular price). In such contracts, the record company might also limit the number of music compositions that it will pay royalties for, even if the album contains more songs/numbers.