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What is a main artist?

4 min read

This can be a performer or group of performers.

A main artist can be a band or lead performer credited for the sound recording.

Main Artist

The main artist, sometimes also referred to as the lead artist, releasing artist, featured artist, or primary artist, is a performer or group of performers as the artist mainly featuring on stage or on the sound recording. A main artist can be a solo performer, a band, or an orchestra. These performers can be artists or to a .

What rights does a main artist have?

The main artist usually has all or a share of the in the and the , as well as the right to be credited as the main artist, though this depends on the terms of the . In addition, if you are the main artist and wrote or co-wrote the musical work, you may also have a share of the in the and be entitled to a .

Explore our Music Creators’ Rights, Rights Transfer and Licensing, and Scope of Protection topics to learn more about rights.

If the main artist is a band, these rights may all be shared between the band members. But that is subject to each member's contributions and their agreements.

Explore both our topics, Songwriting, and Recording, to learn more about band members' roles and how rights and income may be split between them.

Image credit: Jakob Johansson, Parapix