Intellectual Property Rights……

26 Oct

Setting the Record Straight

In 1995 I started writing music using the name “To-Ka ‘, with my friend and DJing  partner, Andy Riley.  He was primarily a DJ who wanted to get into the business of production.  I was a producer and had spent most of my life learning the art.  We blended well.  Andy had very creative ideas, could play  and I had the experience to bring it to fruition.  To facilitate our artistic endeavours, I worked as the in house producer, Monday thru Friday for Strictly for Groovers, the label run byNottingham’s infamous sound system, DiY,  enabling us to use the studio at the weekends whilst DiY were partying.  We soon established a good reputation and our sales steadily increased……

Many inaccuracies have been become ‘folk law’ as to the development of To-Ka into the Toka Project, not least by the ‘Discography’ website which is an open forum, administered by it’s members.  The information held by them was not written by Andy or me and contains information which is not only inaccurate but is, frankly, a pack of lies.  It states that we were joined by Jason Cowley, Dan Lye and Andrew Macari.  Although, we did set up our own studio with Jason and Dan, Andrew Macari was never a member of the team and with whom we never wrote any music.  He was a charlatan who appeared one day with stories of his contacts and with the promise that working with him would lead to great things.  He sat in on our sessions, pontificating on how the music we were working on was brilliant but, contributed nothing.  We later found out that Macari went over to live with his girlfriend in the USA and, that he was claiming to be the central figure in Toka Project and DiY, building a profitable business as a DJ on the strength of our hard work……



Meanwhile, Dan and Jason, having invested in the studio, became members of Toka Project but in reality couldn’t play a note and gave ‘armchair’ advice as to how good the piece myself and Andy were working on at the time……

Where are we Now?…..

I haven’t been proactive in producing music for some years.  However, Andy Riley has continued to produce some stunning tracks, using the Toka Project name and with my blessing.  The problems arise from the use of the Toka Project name as a means to market products……


The Violation of Intellectual Property……


Having established a good reputation over many years, it could be regarded as a seal of approval, with buyers knowing that they would be buying quality music and knowing it would sell.  This has been exploited on many occasions, with ‘feat Toka Project’ and with ‘Toka Project Remixes’ etc.  This can only help to sell CD’s, 12”s or Albums.  The only problem I have with this, is that as the copyright holder none of these releases have been cleared by me, nor have I been advised of their existence.  There are also many compilation albums about which I have not been notified.  Under the agreements for which the material was originally recorded, the standard  one track licensing obligations were as follows:

  • A fee is paid for the original recording and 1st release.
  • When production costs have been recouped the profit split is 50/50
  • If a track is licensed to a 3rd party a fee is payable, split 50/50
  • All publishing is exclusively owned by the writer
  • In the event of a track being remixed by a 3rd party, a fee will be charged and split 50/50.  The publishing remains the intellectual property of the writer
  • The writer retains the right to approve any changes made to the track and can veto its release if unsatisfied with the remix or sampling thereof
  • After 5 years all rights revert to the writer unless otherwise stated in the contract

Music, Music, Everywhere……

Due to the internet, I have found dozens of remixes, compilations and re-issues about which I have not been consulted.  I am receiving no royalty payments and the labels from which the tracks originate do not send me any royalty statements.  This music is for sale on iTunes, Spottify, eBay and on the original labels websites.  Although, it may cost an average of £0.75 per tune, it all adds up.  The sites mentioned above are professionally run and I do not believe that sales statements are being provided to the labels involved who, in turn, are obliged to supply copies to the artist……

I am currently consulting with MCPS and a music Lawyer.  I’ll keep you informed……


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