Do You Run a Podcast? This New Service Can Help You License Music

You’re not supposed to include copyrighted music in a podcast without seeking permission from the rights holder, something that can cost an awful lot of money and is fraught with innumerable complexities. This is the reason an Ongoing History of New Music podcast doesn’t exist. Believe me, if we could offer podcasts, we would. At this point, though, releasing podcasts with the music embedded is pretty much impossible.

There’s also confusion over what constitutes “fair use.” Can you use a clip of a song in a podcast as opposed to the full thing? Is there really a “30-second rule” that offers some latitude? Legal opinions are divided.

Enter :30cast, a new licensing company for music in podcasts.


Here’s their press release.

Nashville-based music tech company, :30cast, has created a platform for podcasters to directly license 30 second music clips from musicians, songwriters, and labels. The company is now reviewing new music submissions and podcaster applications. Visit to send your music for consideration or apply for a podcaster member account.

Podcasting has been around for years, but with advancements in mobile technology, podcasts are growing and now becoming a viable means of exposure and revenue for songwriters and artists. Podcasts are on-demand audio programs of virtually any topic that can be accessed on mobile devices, computers, and smart TVs.

Musicians, or those who control any song copyrights, can submit 30-second song clips of their choice to Podcasters submit an application for membership and once approved, have access to :30cast’s online shop to easily purchase a license to use the music in a podcast episode. Podcasters have the options of single use, 1-month, 3-month, 6-month, and 1-year license periods. Each transaction earns a royalty payable to the song owner, who then distributes portions to any other parties with ownership in the song.

There are many benefits to licensing music through :30cast for use in podcasts:

  • Exposure to audiences already captivated by an audio program
  • Freedom to select which 30-second sound clip is submitted to :30cast
  • Non-exclusive licensing
  • Be a part of a developing digital medium

In today’s complicated music industry, :30cast’s mission is to simplify the music licensing process, easily provide high quality music for podcasters, and establish an additional revenue stream for music creators. New and established artists alike now have a new territory to gain exposure and new fans.

Podcasting has done to radio what Netflix has done to television & movies. Since 2013, the growth of podcasts have seen a dramatic rise in listenership and accessibility:

  • According to Apple, podcasts subscriptions surpassed 1 billion across 250,000 unique podcasts in over 100 languages.  (MacWorld)
  • One-third of all Americans 12 years of age or older have listened to at least one podcast. (Edison Research)
  • 82% of smartphone podcast listening takes place on an iPhone through the built in podcast app. (Clammr)

The company is now accepting music and podcaster submissions and will officially launch this summer at Podcast Movement in Chicago. Podcast Movement is the largest podcasting conference in the country, drawing over 1,500 active and aspiring podcasters who will come together to discuss developing industry trends and the future of podcasting.

For more Information, please visit


Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.