So, I’ve just quit my band after 3 years with these guys as it was going nowhere and I wanted to try something else. In the band, I wrote all of the lyrics and also wrote half of the song melodies, plus came up with extra harmonies etc. My departure hasn’t been that well-received – I think they’re pretty bitter about it – and they’ve started advertising for a new singer with the words “Full set written, demos recorded…”
My question is, if they intend to use all of these co-written songs, plus all my lyrics, and I don’t want them to, where do I stand on that? I didn’t ‘copyright them’ to me or anything as no recording contract was ever likely, but I’m uncomfortable about them using my lyrics and basically passing them off as their own… In my eyes, it’s ‘stolen art’, even though we're unsigned musicians. I wouldn’t mind so much if the lyrics were tossed-off and crap, but in my view the lyrics really added a story and a whole lot of depth to what were pretty basic songs. It’s not definite that they will use them but it sounds like that’s the intention.
Appreciate I may sound like a sour grapes git here – hey, we’re only amateur musicians and all - but has anyone come across this before? Without a contract, who ‘owns’ the material? Any opinions on this? Cheers