Sony student intern discusses licensing and on-air programming

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Mason galemore
Contributing writer
mgalemore@murraystate.edu

The day Zachary Boardman got a phone call from Sony Music Publishing in April was the day he expected.

The award-winning company called to tell Boardman, a major in the music business, that he had been selected for an internship in the summer of 2021.

He applied on March 30 after learning about the program through his Music Business Advisor, Professor Karen Kane.

“I thought that would be a good place to start,” Boardman said. “They have a huge catalog of music and very famous artists. It was very exciting to work with a company that represents so much star power. “

Sony Music Publishing interned eight students, including Boardman, from across the United States. For 10 weeks, the interns underwent extensive training and gained work experience in the music publishing industry.

Due to the pandemic, Boardman worked remotely for Sony’s administrative office in Nashville, Tennessee. The company works primarily with performing rights organizations, including the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. Performing rights organizations raise money for different songwriters and give the money to Sony.

Then Sony gives the money to the songwriters. It was Boardman’s job to make sure all the royalties were correct by cross-checking the information Sony had with the information held by performing rights organizations.

Boardman said his biggest responsibility during the internship was to assess licenses and revenues for different clients. He said it was very interesting to see how everything worked out in such an unknown side of the music industry.

“It was an audit process,” Boardman said. “I had to make sure everything was up to the royalties between Sony Music Publishing and its customers. “

Boardman also worked on the programming of the program. Some groups and symphonies started television shows and had to be scheduled to air. He would work to make sure all the dates don’t overlap.

Boardman said it’s important to plan ahead for tracking and income planning. He said there were strict deadlines he had to meet. He said if he didn’t meet the deadlines, clients would not get paid and the schedules would be ruined.

“It sounds very complicated and unfamiliar to people who are not in the music industry,” Boardman said. “When I see the numbers and the flow of the money, it’s very interesting. It’s a lot of work, but interesting.

Boardman said that on leaving his summer internship the most important thing he learned was good time management and communication skills. He said he recommends people strive for both of these qualities.

“Communication is the key that unlocks the lock,” Boardman said. “If you don’t have good communication, you won’t have the same opportunities in the workplace. “

Boardman will continue as an intern for Sony Music Publishing until December 1.


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