Record your own Choro CD

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Record your own choro tracks using Choro Music backing tracks (by Daniel Dalarossa)

Grab and keep your audience’s attention: have your tracks ready to easily distribute at the best and most inexpensive way. Get a license for any Choro Music catalog item to make your own choro track.

What a value when you think of the costs involved with hiring players, arrangers and studio. Showcase your best efforts by taking advantage of being able to record with unchanging tracks: record until you get the best version and are happy with the finished product.

The selection of the choro ensemble made up of the best musicians, arrangements, harmonization, recordings, mixing, and mastering of the songs is ready for you to be the soloist of your very own choro track.

Discover what can be done using Choro Music backing tracks...

Licensing options

Licensing fees for making personal recordings shall be based on a flat fee of $100.00 per music track from Choro Music, regardless of the duration of the track. 

A maximum of 1,000 copies may be sold under our usual terms and conditions. It is understood between Global Choro Music and youself that (i) these rights are not transferable to third parties; (ii) the license shall be valid for a period of five years; and (iii) beyond the five-year initial term, all rights to these copyrighted tracks shall revert back to Global Choro Music.

Please submit the following via email to

1. List of track title(s).

2. How will the track(s) be used?
Recording for sale?
Demo use?
Please include details.

3. Your full legal name, address, phone and your email address. 

For public performances: Please send us all relevant information of use requested.

A little background on copyright music

Many people have an incorrect understanding of many aspects of copyrighted music production and marketing (recording, arrangements and scores). It is not our objective to be exhaustive here, because this topic can be complicated. It is also not our intent for this text to be used as a legal advice. All that said, we do want to provide some level of clarification:

1) Can I resell a Choro Music backing track that I have purchased?

No. Our backing tracks are not for resale, but we do allow you to record your own solo, mix with our backing tracks to produce your own choro tracks and sell those tracks as a final product, but you will have to pay license fees as explained below. 

2) Do I have to pay license fees/royalties when I produce my own track using Choro Music backing tracks ?

Yes. If the song in question is in public domain (see below), you only pay Choro Music for the rights to use our copyrighted material (phonogram). 

If the song is not under public domain:

  • you must pay a license fee to Choro Music to use the phonogram.

  • You must also get the authorization and pay royalties to the corresponding owner of the song (original publisher).

3) Why do I have to pay two times (Choro Music and original publisher) if the song is not under public domain?

Because there are always two entities involved in the licensing process:

a) The producer of the phonogram. You can be this entity if you want to: you will typically pay an arranger, the musicians, the studio, mixing and mastering professionals, etc. and produce the phonogram yourself. In our discussion here, Choro Music did all this for you with the best musicians, studios and professionals in Brazil. But whether you use our phonogram or somebody else's, you always have to be careful about using a phonogram that you did not produce.

b) The original publisher: a typical example here is Universal Music. Among many choros, they own the copyright for "Receita de Samba" by Jacob do Bandolim. So, if you want to record this choro, publish the score (even if it is your own arrangement), or use somebody else's phonogram, you will have to get Universal Music's authorization for your project and pay a royalty fee to them. 

4) Why do composers contract with publishers?

Composers normally do not want to get involved with all the formalities and bureaucracies of licensing their music to other entities, do not want to get involved in a litigation with someone who is illegally making money with their music (among many other situations) ... so they hire a publishing house that will give them peace of mind by handling all aspects related to their music. 

5) When is a song under public domain?

This is not an easy question to answer because:

  • many countries have different rules (especially the USA).

  • it can involve not only the song itself, but also its lyrics.

  • some jurisprudences might apply to specific situations ... but in general:

a) For most countries in Asia, South America and Europe: the song becomes public domain 70 years after the death of the composer. A simple way to calculate is to add 71 to the composer's year of death. Example: Ernesto Nazareth's music went into public domain in 1936 + 71 = 2007.

The following are the main choro composers already in public domain: Ernesto Nazareth, Chiquinha Gonzaga, Joaquim Callado, Zequinha de Abreu, Viriato da Silva, Bonfiglio de Oliveira, Noel Rosa, Joao Pernambuco, Anacleto de Medeiros, Irineu de Almeida, Mario Cavaquinho, Santos Coelho, Aristides Borges, Andre Victor Correa, Pedro Galdino, Carramona, among others.

b) In the USA, any song published before 1917 with a copyright notice is under public domain. Example: Scott Joplin's music. After 1917, there are complex rules involving if it was originally published with a copyright notice, if the copyright was renewed later, etc. 

Any Brazilian choro composer who died and whose songs were published before 1917 can be easily understood as in public domain worldwide. Example: Joaquim Callado, who passed away in 1880 and is considered the founding father of choro. If you play choro, you simply must know his famous "Flor Amorosa."

Here is a partial list of composers that are not in public domain: 

Jacob do Bandolim, Pixinguinha, Altamiro Carrilho, Benedicto Lacerda, Severino Araujo, K-Ximbinho, Luiz Americano, Abel Ferreira, Luis Gonzaga, Ratinho, Waldir Azevedo, Paulinho da Viola, Juventino Maciel, Dilermando Reis, Dante Santoro, Luperce Miranda, Rossini Ferreira, Nelson Alves, Lina Pesce, Hermeto Pascoal, Radamés Gnattali.

6) What if the song has lyrics? Do the rules above still apply for public domain?

If the publisher can prove the song was originally written with an instrumental arrangement and lyrics as a whole, the date-of-death-rule should apply to both instrumental and lyrics. 

If the song was originally published as instrumental only and lyrics were later added to it, only the composer of the instrumental part should be considered when applying the 70-year rule. 

However, if the lyrics that were added to the original instrumental version vastly contributed to the success of the song, then both composer and writer should be taken into consideration. Another way to put it: if the lyrics added to the instrumental part made the song unique, in the sense that lyrics and instrumental part became somehow "undetachable," there might be an exception.

Example: Carinhoso by Pixinguinha (instrumental version) published in the 1920s and Braguinha (lyrics) added to it in the 1930s. The instrumental version of Carinhoso should theoretically go to public domain in 2041, because Pixinguinha passed away in 1973, but because Braguinha's lyrics undeniably made Carinhoso a worldwide success, most likely Braguinha's date of death (2006) should also apply: Carinhoso would then only become public domain in 2077. 

Note that this is not a law, but it is the current understanding of many experts in the field. In theory, such a matter would only be settled in a court of law in a possible future litigation. 

7) What can I do with a song under public domain?

You can do anything you want and make money with it. Examples: print and sell the scores, make an arrangement and sell it, record the song, perform the song in public, etc. You don't have to pay copyright or license fees to anyone, except if you use somebody else's work: a backing track, a score, an arrangement, etc. You must produce everything yourself to avoid paying the fees.

8) Do I have to pay royalties or license a backing track or an arrangement in a score that I produced?

Yes if the song is not under public domain. Example: you record a backing track of "Receita de Samba" or make your own arrangement and decide to sell the MP3 track or your arranged PDF score. You will have to get authorization from Universal Music to sell the material and pay them the corresponding royalties