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John (M)     10 October 2014

How to copyright music

Hello Sir, I am a Music Composer & I wanna enter the Film Industry. Before I send my compositions to any directors/ producers, I wanna copyright my creation. Please let me know the following

  1) How to copyright music in India? 

   2) What all parts of a song can be copyrighted. I mean, is the song copyrighted as a whole ( Tune + Lyrics ) or is it just the tune or Lyrics copyrighted individually?

   3) Suppose someone steals my tunes( happens very frequently in the industry)  & put up new lyrics to the same Tune which I have already copyrighted, will this be considered as a new song ??  Actually speaking, Tune is the most important part & Any number of lyrics can be written for just 1 tune.

 Please clarify my above questions & Thanks a lot in Advance .


 6 Replies

Sunil S Nair (lawyer)     13 October 2014

All to say entire song lyrics, chores, tunes in written form can be copyrighted in your name there is no problem with that you can take help of IPR agent or Advocate specially practicing in IPR to do this for you

KZENTE   23 June 2018

Use a RingTone Cutter tool to edit music, help you have the song Lyrics very cool

Akash Kashyap   07 October 2019

Copyright: Copyrights protect original creative works. Anything that constitutes an artistic expression falls under this umbrella – and can be protected with a copyright. Novels, films, musical compositions, paintings – theses are obvious examples of copyrightable material. However, there are many non-obvious materials that fall under this heading – such as databases, sound recordings, advertising copy,websites, newspaper articles, and some forms of software code.

Copyrights provide somewhat limited protections, balanced against the longest period of protection. Copyrighted materials are also less likely to be limited or nationalized by the government, as their public utility is generally quite low.

At the Law Offices of Akash Kashyap, Esq. , we use only the best copyright lawyers available, trained and licensed in the US and India. We provide these legal services both through our Indian offices in New Delhi and Gurgaon, as well as online.

yilmazvolkan   13 March 2020

Hello, I think you should learn about the DMCA. This is a brand that helps you protect music copyrights for free.

yilmazvolkan   18 March 2020

I know of an unlicensed music supply site that you can find out at:

Archit Uniyal   28 March 2020


Answer to your 1st question - 

In India, copyrights are protected and governed by The Copyright Act 1957 (as amended by the Copyright Amendment Act 2012) where all copyrights registrations are handled by the Copyright Office under the immediate control of a Registrar of Copyrights, appointed by the Central Government. The copyright lasts for 60 years and will be applicable to all the countries part of the Berne Convention as Copyright registered in India is recognized worldwide under the Berne Convention and the applicable law of its member nations.

A song or music can be copyrighted in India by applying to the Copyright Office in India with an application for registration of copyright along with some documents. You may find the form and the list of the required documents on the copyright office website of India.


For your second question - Yes you would have to copyright both of them separately as in every recorded song there exists two main copyrights: one in the written song itself (the Songwriting Copyright) and one in the recording of the song (the Sound Recording Copyright)

Thirdly - If someone steals your tune and adds new lyrics to it to make a new song, you can file a case against the person for copyright infringement because he did it without your permission. 

I hope this resolves your query.


Archit Uniyal

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