Steve Gordon is an entertainment attorney and consultant based in New York City specializing in the production, distribution and financing of music, television, documentaries, feature films, and digital entertainment projects. Steve also operates a music clearance service for producers, filmmakers and labels who use music in films, concert programs, documentaries and compilations.

He is the author of The Future of the Music Business: How to Succeed with the New Digital Technologies (4th Ed. Hal Leonard 2015), which focuses on the rules pertaining to the music business and new business models made possible by the Internet. The book provides a legal and business roadmap to artists, music industry professionals, and entrepreneurs for using today’s technologies to succeed. For more information and updates, please visit To see Steve’s other publications, please click here.

Steve is proud to announce that he recently completed a new book: The 11 Contracts That Every Artist, Songwriter and Producer Should Know, to be published early Spring 2017 by Hal Leonard but is available for pre-order now at Those who order will receive access to a one hour video featuring Steve speaking on the legal fundamentals of the music business and attorney Bob Clarida speaking on copyright infringement in the context of the music business.

The 11 Contracts Every Artist, Songwriter, and Producer Should Know is an in-depth guide to help artists, songwriters, and producers navigate the tricky world of contract negotiations in the music industry. This book analyzes the most common, and important, contracts – including management, production company, sync license, and producer agreements – all paired with professional commentary and exclusive interviews with top industry moguls. Readers will learn the ins and outs of both the legal and business side of contracts in the music industry so that they will never find themselves stuck on the wrong side of a bad deal.



Steve is the recipient of two Fulbright Scholarships in music and copyright law. He recently visited Israel as a Fulbright Scholar, where he taught a course based on his book at Tel Aviv University’s prestigious Recanati School of Business. Previously he was a Fulbright scholar in Italy, where he lectured at Bocconi University for their masters program in Arts, Culture, Media and Entertainment in November 2007.


Steve has provided legal services to major companies such as MTV, Music Choice, Sony Music, Time Life Films, Microsoft, leading online media companies such as Pitchfork, and many independent artists, producers, managers, and entrepreneurs. 


From 1991 to 2002, Steve served as Director of Business Affairs at Sony Music. There he negotiated and drafted agreements on behalf of Sony with recording artists, and was responsible for all legal work pertaining to TV and video for artists such as Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Billy Joel, Mariah Carey, Lauryn Hill, Wyclef Jean and many others. He also served as counsel for Automatic, Sony’s in-house TV production company. In that role he oversaw all business and legal matters for the music based TV series “Sessions at West 54th” on PBS and “Live by Request” on A&E. Prior to joining Sony, Steve drafted and negotiated recording agreements on behalf of Atlantic and Elektra Records with urban, rap, dance, hip hop and R&B artists.


Steve is the host of a podcast called The Future of the Music Business. The program focuses on new digital business models and opportunities, and features interviews with artists, music executives, entrepreneurs, scholars, journalists and attorneys.