CLE Track

The revolution hitting the music industry challenges all bluegrass professionals with how to make a living when the financial structure around us feels like it is constantly changing.  For our second year of CLE (Continuing Legal Education), the attorney volunteers on the CLE Committee developed a program that provides advice on ways to fund your bluegrass career, presented by national legal experts in language that does not require you to be a lawyer. Our legal experts will help you identify ways to “hold what you got” and give you ideas on how to make money from the other things you do for your career.


To participate in the CLE Track, register for the IBMA Business Conference. Registration will open for members on April 4th at 10:00 AM Central. Business Conference registration includes all CLE Track events along with all other conference events, including the Bluegrass Ramble. Tickets for the Awards Show Thursday night and the Wide Open Bluegrass Festival on Friday and Saturday can be purchased separately.

Registration opens, April 4th, 2017 for IBMA Members, April 18 for Non-Members.

For all other tickets, visit our Buy Tickets page

Sample CLE​ Seminars

These seminars were offered in 2016. IBMA's 2017 CLE Track will feature timely topics presented by the leading voices in their fields.

Tuesday,  September 27, 2016

11:15am – 12:15am

Music Industry 101
Besides recordings, how can you make money in the music  business?  Entertainment attorney and author Rob Monath discusses how to license and monetize creative property beyond just the music.  He will highlight other creative property that can be used to fund a musical career.

1:00pm – 2:00pm Current Music Licensing Issues Created by Streaming Services
Entertainment law bloggers David Oxenford and Coe Ramsey discuss how the music licensing system is being impacted by streaming, which is overtaking other forms of music consumption.  How will artists get paid? How are the music industry battles for diminishing revenue streams being played out?


Wednesday, S​eptember 28, 2016

8:30am – 9:30am

What is your digital legacy?  National digital rights expert Evan Carroll and Raleigh attorney Jean Carter will offer strategies for transferring your digital assets to your heirs or others.   This discussion will address how artists can protect the economic interest in their creative property under these new rules.

9:45am – 10:45am Soundalikes Litigation
Duke University law professor Jennifer Jenkins will discuss lawsuits over when song similarities amount to copyright infringement. She will discuss the legal doctrines (some intuitive, some bizarre) and play lots of audio examples to illustrate the decisions to date.

Speaker Bios

Evan Carroll

Evan Carroll is a frequent speaker on all things digital.  He has presented to audiences at SXSW Interactive, the Library of Congress, the Internet Archive, DIG South, the American Marketing Association and the Direct Marketing Association. A leader in digital legacy and personal archiving,  Evan is author and co-founder at The Digital Beyond and co-author of the book, Your Digital Afterlife: When Facebook, Flickr and Twitter Are Your Estate, What’s Your Legacy? (New Riders Press, 2010). Evan has appeared in numerous media outlets including The New York Times, CBS Sunday Morning, NPR’s Fresh Air, and The Atlantic.Evan holds MS and BS degrees from UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Information and Library Science. He currently serves as Past President for the Triangle American Marketing Association and is a member of the National Speakers Association.

Jean Carter

Jean Carter’s practice focuses on estate planning and administration, tax-exempt organizations and charitable giving. She also regularly handles North Carolina tax matters. She works with families and nonprofit organizations to create workable plans necessary to advance their economic and tax goals. For families this includes assisting with their estate planning and trusts, wealth transfers and estate administration needs. She frequently handles North Carolina tax matters for individuals, corporations and other entities, often working with the North Carolina Department of Revenue. Jean is a Certified Public Accountant and Board Certified Specialist in Estate Planning and Probate law. She has been quoted in media outlets such as the Wall Street Journal, Forbes,Reuters/CNBC and Best’s Review regarding tax and estate planning issues.

Jennifer Jenkins

Jennifer Jenkins is Director of Duke's Center for the Study of the Public Domain and a Senior Lecturing Fellow at Duke Law School, where she teaches courses in Intellectual Property and Music Copyright. She leads the Center's “Arts Project,” which analyzes the effects of intellectual property on cultural production. Jenkins is author of numerous works, including the casebook Intellectual Property: Law and the Information Society (2014) (with James Boyle), the article “In Ambiguous Battle: The Promise (and Pathos) of Public Domain Day,” and Bound By Law, a graphic novel that deals with fair use and documentary film (co-authored with Keith Aoki and James Boyle). She has written for The Huffington Post and been quoted in stories about copyright law from The Economist, The New York Times, USA Today, and NPR’s Marketplace.

Robert A. Monath

Robert Monath's practice focuses on the protection and development of intellectual property. He handles legal and business matters involving copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets and related areas for a wide range of clients in music, publishing, arts, entertainment, business, health care, education, government and non-profit organizations.  He has served on the Board of Managers for the Carolina Patent, Trademark and Copyright Law Association and on the Council for the Intellectual Property Section of the North Carolina Bar Association. Rob has also been invited to present CLE programs on a variety of intellectual property topics, and he is a frequent speaker and lecturer. Rob is a published author, and his By The Book: A Simple Copyright Compliance Method for Musicians and Music Professionals has become a leading and indispensable guide in its field.  He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with degrees in English and Law. He has taught business law at N.C. State University and clerked at the North Carolina Court of Appeals. In particular, please note that he presented a CLE-approved session to the Carolina Patent, Trademark and Copyright Law Association in 2012 on the topic “Advising Clients Regarding Copyright Termination.”

David Oxenford

David Oxenford is the author of the Broadcast Law Blog.   David is a partner at the law firm of Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP, in its DC office.  He has represented broadcasters for over 30 years on a wide array of matters from the negotiation and structuring of station purchase and sale agreements to regulatory matters. His regulatory expertise includes all areas of broadcast law including the FCC’s multiple ownership limitations, the political broadcasting rules, EEO policy, advertising issues, and other programming matters and FCC technical rules. David also represents webcasters and other digital media companies, including serving as counsel to a webcast trade association. He represents these companies on copyright, music licensing and other business and regulatory issues. He is a regular speaker at broadcasting and digital media conferences, conventions and trade shows across the country, and regularly conducts webinars for many trade associations. He has also served as an expert witness on broadcasting and music licensing issues.

Coe W. Ramsey

Coe Ramsey is a partner at Brooks Pierce. His practice focuses on entertainment and communications law. Coe’s practice includes representation of major recording artists and producers, development and A&R companies, bands, musicians, singers, songwriters, record companies, publishers, music producers, re-mixers, disc jockeys, and other artists.  He represents clients on various matters relating to the music entertainment business, including copyright and other intellectual property disputes, record contracts, publishing agreements, producer agreements, record profit share agreements, band agreements, band and production partnership disputes, development contracts, formation and financing of entertainment companies, agency agreements, management agreements and management disputes, music licensing, songwriter agreements, sponsorship agreements, and touring and live performance contracts. He also represents clients in television and film projects. In addition, Coe is an Adjunct Professor at Wake Forest University School of Law where he teaches Entertainment Law and a past Chair of the Sports and Entertainment Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association. Coe is a frequent speaker before broadcasters association meetings and related seminars.  He regularly serves as guest lecturer for classes and student groups on music and entertainment law at law schools including Duke University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Wake Forest University, University of Virginia, Washington and Lee University, North Carolina Central University, Campbell University, and Elon University.  Additionally, he routinely speaks at continuing legal education events on music copyright law and writes legal articles for entertainment publications, including DJ Times.  Coe operates DJ, a blog dedicated to the discussion of legal issues relating to the music entertainment business, with a particular emphasis on music copyright law.

Ronald Raxter, Moderator

Ron Raxter recently retired after practicing law for almost 40 years.  His practice included advising non-profit arts organizations.  He was a founder of two non-profit arts organizations, the Apple Chill Cloggers and PineCone - the Piedmont Council of Traditional Music.  He currently serves on the Board of Directors of PineCone, the Education Committee of the International Bluegrass Music Association and Raleigh’s Local Organizing Committee for the World of Bluegrass.  He is a 2015 graduate of Leadership Bluegrass and facilitated the 2016 Southeast Retreat for Leadership Bluegrass. He also plays bass in several Raleigh string bands.