alibi online
Weekly Alibi PodcastFree Will AstrologyAlibi's Personals

Flyer on the Web Post yours here
See more flyers here

Out of the Woodwork
Out of the Woodwork
TroyBoi Live
TroyBoi Live
A Film In Color/Glasir
A Film In Color/Glasir
tartar control and more
tartar control and more
 V.18 No.47 | November 19 - 25, 2009 

Music News

Sound and Sight

New Mexico music licensing company Masterscape, Inc. helps artists make money

Tom Frouge and Michael Davenport of Masterscape, Inc. pause for a picture in Davenport’s Nob Hill office.
Jessica Cassyle Carr
Tom Frouge and Michael Davenport of Masterscape, Inc. pause for a picture in Davenport’s Nob Hill office.

Meeting an Albuquerque musician who makes more than $50 at an average show nowadays is rarer than sighting the elusive yeti, and as most can tell you, earning a respectable sum via song is almost unheard of. Almost.

Imagine a world where you, the independent musician, actually get paid for your efforts. It's possible without shacking up with a major record label or gaining recognition from the national press (neither appreciate your talent anyway). You don't even have to call New York or Los Angeles to get the ball rolling. But you will have to talk to Tom Frouge and Michael Davenport.

The two globe-trotting New Mexicans have worked in the music industry for decades. Frouge is a world and roots music enthusiast, a former executive at labels Putumayo and Triloka and co-creator of the ¡Globalquerque! festival. He's worked in almost every corner of the music business, and he currently owns and operates a management company called Avokado Artists. Meanwhile, Davenport has worked with names like Santana, Ozzy, Emerson, Lake and Palmer. He’s received more than 150 gold and platinum awards for his participation on records by Guns N’ Roses and David Bowie, and for movie soundtracks such as 8 Mile, American Pie, Spawn and South Park. He also owns and operates a music management company called Expressive Artists.

In addition to the many feathers in the duo’s respective caps, together they own Masterscape, Inc., a pre-cleared music master catalog company formed last year. In layman's terms this means they have a bunch of hand-selected music ready to be placed in film, television, video games and commercials. And they might want your music, too.

"It's not about what we like, genre-wise—it's really about how good it is," says Frouge. "It's like what Duke Ellington said, 'There's only two kinds of music—good and bad.' ” Frouge and Davenport don't scrutinize the material so much as judge the production, which must be high quality in order to meet mainstream media standards. If you've got a good recording (from yesterday or years ago) and can prove you own the publishing rights—no sampling unless you have permission—your foot's in the door. "At any given moment it could be absolutely anything that someone might want," says Davenport. The more diverse the catalog is, the better chance of placement, making money for artists and Masterscape, Inc. and completing the circle of life.

So how do you get considered? Educate yourself and get your ducks in a row. Register with ASCAP, BMI or SESAC—performing rights organizations that collect royalties on behalf of writers and publishers—ensuring you own your master recordings and compositions. Online, these organizations provide a wealth of information. "If someone takes 10 minutes to review their websites, they'll understand how licensing works," says Davenport.

In addition to creating a symbiosis between film and music with a catalog from around the world, Frouge and Davenport have an affinity for music made here at home. "New Mexico has become a force in the film and television industry," says Davenport, "and we now have an opportunity to expose New Mexicans’ music to the world through these mediums."

For publishing/licensing information, visit, and

Join our mailing list for exclusive info, the week's events and free stuff!

  • Select sidebar boxes to add below. You can also click and drag to rearrange the boxes; close using the little X icons on each box. To re-add a box you closed, return to this menu.
  • Because you are not logged in, any changes you make to these boxes will vanish as soon as you click to another page. If you log in, the boxes will stick.
  • Latest Posts
  • Web Exclusives
  • Recent Rocksquawk Discussions
  • Recent Classifieds
  • Latest User Posts
  • Most Active Users
  • Most Active Stories
  • Calendar Comments
  • Upcoming Alibi Picks
  • Albuquerque
  • Duke City Fix
  • Albuquerque Beer Scene
  • What's Wrong With This Picture?
  • Reddit Albuquerque
  • ABQ Journal Metro
  • ABQrising
  • ABQ Journal Latest News
  • Albuquerque
  • NM and the West
  • New Mexico FBIHOP
  • Democracy for New Mexico
  • Only in New Mexico
  • Mario Burgos
  • Democracy for New Mexico
  • High Country News
  • El Grito
  • NM Politics with Joe Monahan
  • Stephen W. Terrell's Web Log
  • The Net Is Vast and Infinite
  • Slashdot
  • Freedom to Tinker
  • Is there a feed that should be on this list? Tell us about it.
    tartar control and more
    tartar control and more7.20.2016