Are you Playing Music Legally in your Business?

By: OliviaTue, 10/23/2018

Can you use a personal music streaming service to play music in your restaurant, bar, or store?

The simple answer – no.

Nielsen Music has just published the largest ever study on background music, and the findings show that 83% of businesses use a personal streaming service to play music in their business (Rolling Stone). When we refer to businesses, we mean brick-and-mortar retail, hospitality, restaurants, and in some cases, grocery stores. Not only is using a personal streaming service in a business setting illegal, it is also hurting the artists, songwriters, composers and publishers involved as they are not being compensated for their work.

What’s more, 71% of business owners are not even aware that they need a license to stream music (Digital Music News).

So this begs the question - how do I play music in my business?

The simple answer is that to play music legally in your bar, restaurant, gift shop, etc., each song you play must be licensed.

SOCAN, CML, RESOUND, CSI, SOPROQ and other licenses may all be required if you want to play background music in your business. A licensing body such as SOCAN gives businesses the freedom and flexibility to use almost any music they want. Depending on what type of business you own, and how you intend to use the music in your business, you may need more than one type of license.

This sounds complicated. How do I go about making sure my music is licensed?

Rather than trying to figure that out yourself, leave it to the experts who will not only curate your music to enhance the experience in your store, but who will also ensure you're protected from any potential legal action.

This is where Stingray Business steps in. Because we own all the national licenses required to play music legally in a commercial space, we remove the potential headache you would have to go through to ensure that all the music you are playing is licensed for commercial use. 

Via our music player, our mobile application and web player, we offer a selection of music tailored for businesses that is fully licensed and free of explicit content. Our music library is designed by our in-house team of music experts, who will work with you to create playlists that suit your brand image and elevate your customer experience. No matter which of our music solutions you choose, they all offer a worry-free, simple & fully licensed solution. We place a strong importance on our commitment to artists and publishers, and with our global expertise in music licensing we will help you avoid copyright infringement and non-compliance fines. 

Have any more questions about music licensing? Contact us at to find out more, or visit our website.