Universal Production has soft launched the ‘USample’ website for major affiliated talent.
Universal Music Group first filed the trademark for USample back in October 2021. Now the site is operational, offering a catalog of around 7,000 rare tracks that come “from the depths of the [UMG] archive, digitized for the first time since the original pressings.”
Every track on Usample’s website was originally made as library music for TV and film. Some of the early releases on its website date back to the ’60s and ’70s, which Universal describes as legacy works. “These legacy works are highly sought after by crate diggers and record collectors alike.” The new sample service from Universal adds to the already broad sample catalog.
Universal only wants to work with artists and writers “affiliated with major labels and publishers,” though. On the USample Instagram account, the website is described as “Universal’s secret sample website exclusively for major affiliated talent.” Anyone who wants to use the website is required to request access by filling out a form to verify their identity.
Universal Music owns both the master and the publishing rights to all of the tracks on the USample website. That means all of the samples are easy to clear. It’s important to note that it doesn’t mean the work is royalty-free, however.
“Whilst all of our music is pre-cleared making licensing easy, our work is not royalty-free and must be cleared by your label in the normal way,” the site advises those who are interested in using it as a resource for their projects. USample also has an AI tool that allows it to isolate parts of a track, providing the associated stems upon request.
UMG’s AI software powers its Similarity Search tool that finds similar-sounding tracks for users to consider. “Using AI technology, Similarity Search listens to your reference track, analyzes its audio features, and identifies tracks in the USample catalog that sound similar,” explains the website.