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Backing Track Stem Use in Live Shows

Updated: 27 October 2022 | 14:07 PM

The following rates are for the use of commercial audio recordings, as a backing track to a Commercial Live Performance*.

These rates can only be used for Non-Classical** commercial audio recordings. If a Classical*** recording is required for backing track use in connection with a Commercial Live Performance, the fees should be negotiated directly with the Musicians’ Union ( on a case-by-case basis.

Rates are separate to those within the BPI/MU agreement, which states that a Commissioning Record Label shall pay a fee for use of an Audio Recording as a Commercial Live Performance “backing track”, at a rate agreed between the Commissioning Record Label and the MU (on behalf of the Musician). These rates are options for that agreed rate between the parties.

If the Buyout option is taken, the Buyout rights only apply to the use of commercial audio recordings as a backing track to a Commercial Live Performance*. The Buyout will not apply to any other uses of the recording.


* Commercial Live Performance means a live performance in front of a paying audience. This does not include theatre shows or pantomimes.

** Non-Classical Recording means an Audio Recording which does not constitute a Classical Recording.

*** Classical Recording means an Audio Recording of repertoire which would qualify for inclusion in the Official Charts Company Classical Chart.

Rates of pay

Dual table includes an option for up to 20 concerts, and an option for a live stem use Buyout per track. Both can be decided and payable at any time and available for older tracks.

  Backing track stem use in up to 20 concerts Backing track stem use (only) Buyout, in perpetuity
per player, per concert for 1-9 players £25 £50
per player, per concert for 10-49 players £17.50 £35
per player, per concert for 50+ players £10 £20

Buyout option

£1,200 per track cap