Home > Journals > LAWREVIEW > Vol. 92 > No. 3 (2018)
"The Song Is Ended But the Melody Lingers On": Protecting the Cultural History of the Great American Songbook in the Face of the Public Domain
Part I of this Note discusses the history of American popular song from the late nineteenth century to the mid-twentieth century, showing how the music of the Great American Songbook is particularly monumental in that its sophistication and conglomeration of different musical influences created a unique American musical framework. Part II discusses the framework of music copyright law, including theories of music copyright law, the evolution of the length of music copyright terms in the United States, and the history of the CTEA. Part III argues that Congress should not extend the duration of music copyright now that the CTEA is expired, and proposes a new public domain framework that would better protect cultural music history and the legacies of composers.