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In connection with music, mechanical rights (also called mechanical reproduction) are the rights to make and distribute a physical recording of the music, such as on a CD. This is a right that originally resides with the songwriter composer at the moment of creation but, it is typically assigned to a music publisher.
This right is subject to a statutory compulsory license that permits anyone else to record the work provided the statutory royalty is paid. The Harry Fox Agency represents more than 20,000 American music publishers in the licensing of mechanical rights.