TEL. 212.245.6221     FAX. 212.245.6406


The Law Office of Peter M. Thall specializes in all areas of entertainment law, intellectual property and intangible rights with particular emphasis in music, film, theater, television, book publishing, merchandising, sponsorship, endorsements, fashion, design, photography, and fine art.

Our Firm's attorneys and their associates have counted among their clients winners and nominees of such prestigious awards as the Academy Award, the Grammy Award, the Tony Award and the top prize at the Cannes Film Festival, the Palme D'Or.

The Firm's clientele encompasses a wide variety of artists at the top of their professions, including directors, producers, authors, actors, both popular and classical music performers and recording artists, fashion models, photographers, designers, dancers, film and theatrical composers, writers.

Our Firm's expertise extends across the breadth of the communications industry including a broad practice in the area of the Independent Film, representing producers, actors, directors and all other creative and business elements of that increasingly broadening world based largely in New York. Our Firm provides special counseling services to corporations seeking to comply with various global copyright and other intellectual property laws implied by their on-line presence.

The Firm's attorneys frequently lecture at industry and legal seminars regarding their practice areas and have been featured on local, regional, national and international news and talk shows. Our attorneys' opinions are frequently sought by newspapers and magazines seeking comments on current events in the entertainment industry and seeking to uncover and understand trends.

Among the media in which our attorneys have been featured as experts are Variety, Billboard, USA Today, the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Broadcasting Magazine, Music Business International, American Bar Association Law Journal and New York State Bar Association Law Journal.

Practice Areas


  • Music-Recording and Music Publishing
  • Music Clearance
  • Theater
  • Musical Theater
  • International Live Performing
  • Endorsements and Sponsorship
  • Book Publishing
  • Classical Music
  • Copyright, including Terminations of Copyright and Sale
  • Valuation of music catalogues
  • Internet
  • Film
  • Digital Licensing


  • Recording Artist Agreements
  • Producer Agreements
  • Master License Agreement
  • Music Publishing and Songwriter-related Agreements
  • Songwriter and Music Publishing Agreements including Catalogue Acquisition, Sale and Licensing Agreements
  • Due Diligence services to evaluate Intellectual Property in Mergers and Acquisitions of entertainment-related Agreements
  • Sub-Publishing Agreements
  • Co-Publishing Agreements
  • Co-Writer Agreements
  • Synchronization Agreements
  • Mechanical License Agreements
  • Print agreements, including Digital Print Licenses: individual songs and catalogue licenses
  • Digital Rights Licensing Agreements for Sound and Visual Reproductions of Music
  • Initiating and Defending Against Copyright Infringement and other Intellectual Property Claims
  • Sponsorship Agreements
  • Copyright, including International Copyright Conventions, the United States Copyright Law, including Compulsory License Provisions, the DMCA, the AHRA, Work for Hire Issues, Copyright Office Searches and Analysis, WIPO, TRIPP, Terminations of copyright under 1909 and 1976 Copyright Acts
  • Joint Venture Agreements
  • Licensing Agreements of every type and nature, including those involving the transfer or licensing of Intellectual Property rights in general
  • Executive Employment and Compensation Agreements
  • Agreements with Performing Rights Societies (United States)
  • Agreements with Performing Rights Societies (Ex-United States)
  • Agreements with Mechanical Rights Protection and Licensing Societies
  • Artist-related Agreements
  • Management Agreements Agreements with Business Managers and Accountants, including Auditors Publicists and Public Relations Agreements
  • Neighboring Rights Agreements
  • Agency Agreements
  • Touring Agreements including:
    • Bus and Truck Agreements
    • Jet Plane Leases
    • Sound Agreements
    • Lighting Agreements
    • Stage Construction and Licensing Agreements
    • Merchandise Agreements
    • Hall Merchandise Agreements
    • A F of M Performance Agreements
    • Non Union Performance Agreements
    • Promoter Agreements
    • Social Networking Relationships
    • Live Streaming and Live in HD Events
  • Celebrity Endorsement Agreements
  • Exclusive Merchandise Agreements including Touring and Retail
  • Cast Album Agreements
  • Soundtrack Agreements
  • Partnership Agreements
  • Internet-related Agreements
  • Internet Performing Rights Agreements
  • Internet Mechanical Rights Agreements
  • Internet Webcast Agreements
  • Internet Synchronization Agreements
  • Internet Music Rights Clearances and Agreements
  • Internet Domain Name Dispute Negotiations and Resolutions
  • Book Publishing-related Agreements
  • Photographer Agreements including licensing and book publishing
  • Photograph Protection and Compliance with Photographer's rights worldwide
  • Literary Agent Agreements
  • Classical Music Agreements of every type and nature including Recording Agreements
  • Musical composition commission agreements
  • Talent Engagement Agreements
  • Name and Likeness Depiction Agreements
  • Actor Agreements (Film and Theatrical)

Peter M. Thall

ImagePeter M. Thall is a veteran of more than 45 years of practicing law with a speciality in music law. Mr. Thall has represented many of the world's greatest artists from Simon & Garfunkel to Barry Manilow, Hall & Oates, The Average White Band, ABBA, The Cars, Foreigner, Pat Benatar and innumerable other bands, producers of such contemporary artists as Billy Joel, Weezer, Hole, Nada Serf, D Generation, Will Smith, Boyzone and Hansen and singer/songwriters from Ric Ocasek and James Taylor to the composer of Wicked and several Disney and Dreamworks animated features, Pop star Kiesza, and corporations utilizing music such as Victoria's Secret, Express, Henri Bendel, The Gucci Group.

Crossing over into the classical music area, Mr. Thall represents a wide variety of instrumentalists, opera singers, conductors and performing ensembles, many of whom dominate their respective disciplines. His clients have included the renowned Soprano Anna Moffo, the world-famous violinist Hilary Hahn, and the avant-garde electronic string quartet ETHEL. Performing a somewhat different function, he took charge of the media responsibilities of The Papal Concert to Commemorate the Holocaust, broadcast to more than 52 countries live from the Vatican, which NBC News called one of the great success stories of the 20th Century. He was the Associate Producer of the highly acclaimed PBS Special based on the event, conceived and conducted by Maestro Gilbert Levine.

Among his areas of expertise are:

Copyright Law; Executive Employment Agreements and Compensation Agreements; Copyright Catalogue Valuation and Sale Agreements; Acquisitions and Mergers in the music publishing and recording fields; providing corporations with Copyright Compliance Services in their internet-related businesses.


Copyright Society of the USA (CSUSA)
International Association of Entertainment Lawyers (IAEL)
Association of Independent Music Publishers (AIMP)
Songwriter's Hall Of Fame (SHOF)
Former member of the Entertainment and Sports Law Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York
Founding Member: Entertainment Law Initiative (ELI), National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS)

Community Activities:

Board Member: The New York Festival of Song
Former Patron: The New York City Opera
Member: Metropolitan Opera Guild

Author of:

"A Corporate Counsel Song and Dance: Keeping Your Corporation in Tune and Out of Court" - Read
"The World Bank, The IMF and The Internet" - Read
"The Music Industry: A Modern Day Greek Tragedy" - Read
"Music Companies Must Act Global, Think Local" - Read
"East/ West Trade Must Go Both Ways" - Read
"Equality: A Goal For Human Rights Activists, But For Sound Business Enthusiasts Too" - Monday Memo (Broadcasting Magazine) - Read
"Multi-Media: A Fait Accompli for Attorney Peter Thall" - Read
"ARTISTS AS CAPITAL: Eastern Europe Primed to Join Global Entertainment Scene"
"An American at Midem: Reflecting on IP Afterlife"
"Global Players Aim To Keep a Personal Touch" (Music Business International)
"Strategy: Management Development: A Prescription For Achieving Business Results in Central and Eastern Europe"
"What They Will Never Tell You About the Music Business: The Myths, the Secrets, the Lies (& a Few Truths)"; Watson-Guptill-Billboard Books (publication date: Spring, 2010) (3rd Edition to be published in 2016)


L.L.B. The National Law Center: The George Washington University School of Law, 1967
B.A. Columbia College, Columbia University 1964

Bar Admissions: :

New York

Natasha Azava

Of Counsel

ImageNatasha Azava is a transactional entertainment and intellectual property attorney with experience in television, film, theatre, fashion, photography, design, fine art, with a focus in the music industry. Ms. Azava advises and counsels musicians, artists, producers, designers, record labels, publishers, executives, composers, managers, writers, corporations, festivals and brands.

Ms. Azava's practice focuses on securing, negotiating and documenting business transactions in the entertainment industry, including, recording and music publishing agreements, distribution agreements, sponsorship and endorsement agreements, branding and licensing agreements, live performance agreements, songwriters agreements, producer and production agreements, side artist agreements, writer agreements, management agreements, festival agreements and merchandise agreements.

Ms. Azava performs copyright termination analyses for publishers, authors and their heirs and negotiates and drafts acquisition agreements involving major music publishing and master recording catalogs.

Ms. Azava received her J.D. from Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in 2006 where she served as the Notes Editor of the Public Law, Policy, and Ethics Journal. She received her B.A. magna cum laude in Political Science and Economics from Colgate University in 2003. Ms. Azava joined The Law Office of Peter M. Thall in 2008.

Intellectual Property Law Section of the New York State Bar Association
Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law Section of the New York State Bar Association
New York City Bar Association
Association of Independent Music Publishers (AIMP)

"Second Circuit Addresses Evidentiary Issues in Trademark Infringement Litigation, " Bright Ideas, New York State Bar Association (Spring 2008) - Read
"Video on Demand: Defining Licensing Rights, " Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law Journal, New York State Bar Association (Summer 2007) - Read

J.D., Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, 2006
B.A., Colgate University, magna cum laude, 2003

Bar Admissions:
New York
New Jersey


Image What They’ll Never Tell You About the Music Business: The Myths, the Secrets, the Lies (& a Few Truths)
[Billboard Books, 2010] reveals what most savvy music executives already know - - and hope that readers never find out!

This insider guide discloses the hidden dynamics and often unfortunate consequences of what really happens when a deal is prepared, contracts are signed, and promises are made – and alerts musicians, attorneys, songwriters, and anyone else interested in the music business to the potent dangers lurking beneath the surface of this incredibly competitive industry.

Two dozen chapters in this Revised and Updated Edition cover virtually every aspect of the music industry, including Recording Agreements, Record Royalties, Personal Management, Music Publishing, Music Marketing and Promotion, Merchandising, Touring, Copyright Infringement, the complex area dealing with Termination of Copyrights, Music Publishing Catalogue valuation, Royalty Opportunities You Were Never Told About, and Current Issues regarding Copyright rights and Copyright abuses.

Whether you are an aspiring artist or an established superstar, a personal manager or a major-label executive, an entertainment industry attorney or a business manager, investor or just a long-time music lover—you need to know what this book has to tell you.

The information in this invaluable reference is all explained clearly and concisely with no legal jargon.

For anyone involved in the music business, here is your source of inside information.

You’ll learn:

  • About current international initiatives for establishing a worldwide electronic system of copyright registration and management
  • How many musicians have seized do-it-yourself Internet opportunities to create successful business models - - and how to decide whether that model is right for you
  • How the Internet has affected every aspect of the music business, from copyright and royalty issues to censorship
  • How satellite radio, digital jukeboxes, and video games are affecting the music market
  • The ways in which new coalitions in the industry continue to transform the relationships among artists, record and publishing companies, and the music-loving public
  • How artists can maximize their chances for long-term financial health
  • How the royalty pie is sliced - - and who gets the pieces
  • What snares and pitfalls to avoid when signing an employment contract
  • Why old-time payola practices may be a thing of the past
  • Why a lot of boilerplate contract provisions no longer apply in a world of instant downloads
  • Why reports of the death of the market for classical music have been greatly exaggerated
  • About the changing face of urban music

And much more:

“This book gives you the real deal on the way the music business really works, whether you’re new to the game or even if you think you’re a veteran - - from contracts to touring, good and bad money decisions, and even creating a team no artists should do without.” - Sean Paul, Atlantic Recording Artist.

“A clear contender for the one indispensable work on the topic, this book delivers the goods. There is no one involved in the music business who will not learn and benefit from this ambitious work.” - The New York State Bar Association

“Intelligent and accessible - - rich in references, but easily understandable.” - David Geffen

“An indispensable compass to guide you through the trials, traumas, and occasional triumphs you will encounter in that most unusual “life work” called the music business” - Bruce Lundvall, President and CEO of The Blue Note Label Group of EMI Records

“This book is like a map, showing how to avoid the danger zones in the music business” - Ric Ocasek, Record producer, former lead singer and songwriter, The Cars

“An absolute must for anyone interested in the music business. This is by far the most informative book on the business of music I have read to date, and it’s one that I’ll refer back to regularly.” - BIG HEC, rapper, producer and video magazine publisher.

Contact Us

Peter M. Thall - Attorney at Law

Natasha Azava - Attorney at Law, Of Counsel

Tel: 212-245-6221.
Fax: 212-245-6406.

New York Office
Law Offices of Peter M. Thall
c/o Loren Chodosh, P.C.
36 Lispenard Street, 2nd floor
New York, NY 10013

Connecticut Office
Law Offices of Peter M. Thall
63 Canaan Valley Road PO Box 616
East Canaan, Connecticut 06024