32 Letters to the Editor

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  1. Cool. I am glad you are doing this again. Hopefully after it is said and done, you will combine the parts into one part when archived. (So it matches the other two).

    • You know, I have contemplated doing that. My only concern is people who bookmark one of the older links – I’d probably long-term combine them all into the final post.

  2. Hi Daniel, Keep up the good work on keeping us up-to-date. God bless.

    • Thank you for the encouragement!

  3. In reference to the first paragraph, those are the top 10 songs in churches? I couldn’t give one word of the lyrics or one note of the melody for any of them. I have seen a couple of the titles before.

    Now, the top 10 in 1964, I could probably give at least 2 verses of each one, and some more than that.

    • Regrettably…yes. This is tracked by the main copyright licensing agency which licenses public performance / PowerPoint / etc. reproduction rights for churches through the United States.

      • To be more precise: These are the ten most performed songs in U.S. churches which pay appropriate royalty fees for reproducing lyrics or other portions of a song in any form, including overhead transparencies, hymnal inserts, PowerPoint projections, choir handouts. That’s most churches.

        Other than direct deals with every publisher, CCLI is pretty much the only way to do this legally, to my knowledge. So if a church is duplicating songs in any fashion and following the law, this is the database from which CCLI research is drawn, making this the single most comprehensive list available to my knowledge.

      • I see. We use mostly hymnals.

      • Yes; well, if a church uses only hymnals, and never does choir copies, hymnal inserts, overhead transparencies, or other handouts, they should be fine. But most do at least something, at least once in a while.

      • Correct. The hymnals were already paid for, so you can sing out of them, just not duplicate words or music in any way (including audio / video recording which CCLI covers to a point. (No accompaniment tracks for instance. It must be live music).

      • Well, it is really no concern of theirs if the postage costs more than the money they get. Besides, you turn in the reports online, and if CCLI does mail payments (instead of electronically) it is likely a larger period of time and certainly more churches than yours. Anyhow, the way it works, you pay for a license for all of the songs in their catalog (whether you use them or not) according the the size of your church. The report is so that they can divide the money up more equitably between the publishers they have. :p

        Now, personally, I think making copies for temporary use as long as you own an equal or greater number of them and are not using them at the same time (for instance putting the words in the bulletin or on a screen instead of using the hymnbook) should be fine, since you already paid for the hymnbooks and aren’t making the copies to keep from buying more. However, like it or not, that isn’t the law.

      • We use CCLI. Anyone who does is supposed to every so often (will be notified) keep track of one’s copies for a select period (a few months or so). You don’t count how many “copies” you make, but enter one for each time you do a certain task. For instance, you print in bulletins a week, make a songbook for repeated use, make a slide master, etc. you enter 1 under the appropriate count. You don’t enter how many bulletins it was placed in. They I presume look at your group you belong (when you do your license you choose the one whose ranges fit the number of members you have).

        So, not every church is on a reporting cycle, but is every couple of years or 2 and a half I think. I have done it three or four times, but when I started our period was about over and my predecessor hadn’t done anything. He handed it to me. I had to go back and look at past bulletins.

        There are other options out there. I have seen bulk mail for onelicense.net (I think) which is supposed to (I believe) offer a one stop place to license different things. However, CCLI has added other things. Just this year they added a license that where if you own an audio recording and it is one of their participating publishers, you can duplicate copies for people to learn the songs. You must own the original cd, mp3 etc. (no freebies) and they aren’t permanent copies for people’s libraries. You must enter exactly what version and how many copies (or unique listeners if emailed or put on your website (I think).I have only done the CDs.

      • Quartet-man, thanks! It had been a few years since I was the CCLI reporting/point person. As I seem to recall, when the church I was in at the time was smaller than 50 people, we didn’t have to report which songs we did, but we became a reporter once we hit 50 people.

      • Yikes, that is way too much work! I had no idea.

        My dad shows up 10 minutes early, goes through one of our hymnals from the ’40s, picks a couple of songs that (usually) we all know, I play the piano, and the congregation usually gets to pick one song.

        We do have two songs handed out on paper copies … one of them is probably too old to be in hymnals, and the other is “This is Just What Heaven Means to Me.” An older gentleman who was in his last months of life requested that we sing it occasionally, and it’s stuck.

      • I believe “This is Just What Heaven Means to Me” is still under copyright, so technically, even if it’s just one song, if you want to be sure you’re following the law, you would sign up with CCLI.

        (Or, if it’s just one song, you may check with the publisher to get permission for just that one song.)

      • Well, if we have 20 copies and sing it once in 3-4 months, maybe we would owe them a few cents … I’m afraid it wouldn’t be worth the cost of the postage. 😆

        It’ll wear off after a while and they’ll sing it maybe once a year; I think right now people are still requesting it occasionally in his memory.

      • Amy, I replied, but went too far up and it is beneath the post started by Brian above. 🙂

      • It all depends on which “reply” button you hit. 🙂

        I had interpreted the comment to indicate that “This is Just what Heaven Means to Me” was not in the hymnal. I could be wrong on that, though.

      • Yeah, I realize that, I just skipped one on accident on the way up. 🙂 As far as my comment, I was referring to in general as an example of how I might disagree with some of the literal law myself, but nonetheless what they expect. Even if it is in their hymnals, you aren’t supposed to duplicate without CCLI (unless they are in public domain). However, I personally think it is worse to copy when you haven’t bought the number of copies (i.e. using more copies than you own originals or using both).

      • Agreed, because a decent case could be made that duplicating copies you own, within the number of copies you own, for the same people for whom you own those copies, is almost certainly fair use!

      • Yeah, I agree. They basically say that every time a copy is duplicated in any fashion, you should report it (which we do). However, that indicates that it requires payment when duplication is done when in my mind, if the copies are being used in lieu of the originals, it isn’t costing them current or future sales. To me the spirit of the law in that instance would be met even if literally it didn’t follow the letter. So, with something like that the people would have to decide for themselves. 🙂 Another instance in my mind is if you duplicate music to enlarge it, make notes in it (to keep the original in better shape) or something. As long as you own the originals and are only using one or the other, I don’t see the bad in it. 🙂

  4. Ditto to Brian!

  5. Actually bought a copy of this album @ the 30th anniversary in Nashville in ’95 @ Roy Acuff Theatre @ Opryland… Great find and still wrapped to this day.

    They were smoothe…………..


    • Were they selling it, or were there other sellers there?

  6. There were several product tables of current recordings etc. and one or two of classic items.


    • I saw them in the early nineties and they had cassettes of albums like that, in addition to CDS and tapes of newer stuff, but I don’t recall any LPs.

      • Fascinating!

      • It’s pretty bad. They had many classic albums on cassettes (many recorded from LPS), their main releases, accompaniment tracks, songbooks etc. But the pretty bad part is that I think my first concert (shortly after Fowler joined) found me spending I think around $360. Even after that I spent some serious (but lesser) money the some or all of the other times I saw them. I know I saw them at least three times maybe four. The latter was on their Farewell tour not too many weeks after Glen passed away. Roger covered vocals, but their “big song” was “Champion of Love”. On that one, traditionally at the beginning the tenor sits out and the other four sing a quartet, however since Glen was gone, Ernie sang his part (later in the piece) at the beginning too. (Glen had traditionally sung that same part down an octave.) They didn’t attempt “We Shall See Jesus”.

      • Fascinating. I had assumed they wouldn’t have attempted “We Shall See Jesus,” but that tidbit about “Champion of Love” is one I had not heard before.

      • In case my explanation was not clear, Ernie sang his normal part from the end of the song (at the beginning) too, but softer. Otherwise since Glen wasn’t singing it an octave down at the beginning (like he normally did), it would be missing a part. Roger of course (as he did after Fowler took over the lead) took over Mark Trammell’s old part. As talented as he was, he didn’t find a way to still sing Mark’s old part and Glen’s part as well. 😀

      • I think I get it!

  7. Hey, everyone! The whole review has been combined into one (long) post: http://www.southerngospeljournal.com/archives/7500