As someone who has, in addition to practicing entertainment law, managed a number of musical artists and songwriters, I have both a deep love of music and firsthand knowledge of the inner workings of the entertainment industry. I can foresee what my creative clients need and I enjoy helping them develop strategies to handle the business and legal aspects of their work. My ultimate goal is to ensure my clients are appropriately compensated, and legally and financially protected.
Brenner McDonald is a Member in McGlinchey’s Intellectual Property Group. Based in our Nashville office, she provides advice and counsel on both the legal and business aspects of the entertainment industry to a wide range of clients, including artists, songwriters, comedians, podcasters, athletes, film/tv talent, and other performing and creative artists. Additionally, she represents an array of entertainment business entities and interests, including digital media companies, management companies, independent music labels, television/film production companies, and others.
Brenner’s entertainment and media practice evolved after a successful fifteen-year stint in artist management. In her management role, she developed an overarching skill set including a hands-on knowledge of both the day-to-day and big-picture aspects of the entertainment industry. This ‘real world’ experience afforded her a solid broad-based operational understanding of both the entertainment and digital media verticals. Her clients benefit from a perspective unique amongst lawyers: a deep, personal appreciation of the end result of the creative process, and a practical and equally deep knowledge base of the transactions, agreements, and business operations that surround and support a complex and evolving entertainment and media industry.
Her work encompasses every facet of the entertainment industry – books, comedy, music, sports, television/film, and spoken word. She assists clients in establishing the appropriate corporate structures while negotiating the full spectrum of agreements to both protect and monetize creative works, including licensing, recording, and publishing agreements, TV/film financing agreements, talent and endorsement rights agreements, and related contracts, in addition to IP catalog purchases and sales. She is particularly conversant in the legal and operational aspects of the burgeoning role of digital platforms in the entertainment business and the necessity of protecting ownership rights on digital platforms. She has extensive experience in negotiating catalog purchases, sales, and licensing agreements; film and television investment, financing, and talent agreements; and other contractual arrangements that form the backbone of the entertainment industry.
Thanks to her industry experience, this expertise is tightly integrated with knowledge of the implications of these strategies in a dynamic, rapidly-evolving, and sometimes mercurial business. Due to her unique legal and operational background, Brenner understands and supports her clients by providing salient advice on what will work, what doesn’t work, and what is and isn’t a good idea. Initially, she seeks to understand how her clients think and what hurdles they may face as creative individuals, entities, writers, and performers. She seeks to protect and support each client’s valuable intangible intellectual properties and further seeks to assist in viable, visible outlets for creators in her industry.
Relatedly, she also leverages her skillset, knowledge, and broad network with longstanding industry relationships. Brenner is unique in that she can support her clients in both the legal and creative realms with equal faculty and insight, while often deferring to industry professionals in a way that her clients both prize and rely upon.
In counseling clients on the overall business plan and strategy of their operations, she uses her legal knowledge of name and likeness rights, publicity and endorsement rights, and copyright. Brenner aligns with attorneys skilled in the areas of tax, real estate, employment, and if necessary, litigators, so that her clients receive comprehensive legal services by coordinating and supervising the work of these professionals on behalf of her clients.
Whether the issue is a YouTube video, payments via Sound Exchange royalties, mechanical, performance, or rights of authorship royalties, issues involving digital radio to include SiriusXM, Pandora, Apple, or any of the other digital outlets, Brenner helps her clients navigate the business, legal, and technological landscape so that they can thrive and do what they do best – create.