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End-of-Life Planning Considerations for Music People

    Estate and end-of-life (EOL) planning recommendations are the same for music people as they are for everyone else: Have a properly executed will, complete an advanced care directive, have a trusted friend who will clear your internet browsing history after you are gone.

    But when considering your EOL plans, people who love music may want to consider a few extra things to make sure their love of song is part of their legacy

    Funeral Music

    Do you have any favorite songs you want played at your funeral (or other memorial event)? If so, do you prefer a particular arrangement or rendition?

    Are there any songs – or particular arrangements or instruments – that you don’t want played at your funeral? 

    Many funerals default to the same standards, often on traditional instruments like pipe organs. If those are songs you… well… wouldn’t be caught dead listening to, make your preferences known.

    Favorites Songs or Albums

    If you are the kind of music fan who loves recommending your favorites to others, make a list of your favorite songs, artists, or albums to include in your funeral or memorial program. 

    Suggest your friends and family listen to some of your favorites in your memory. 

    You can even make the list easily accessible by creating an online playlist on Spotify.  

    Music Collections

    If you have a physical music collection (like a vinyl collection), be sure it’s included in your estate plan’s inventory of assets. 

    Consider what you want to have happen to your collection after you are gone:

    • Is it important to you that your collection remains intact? 
    • Who do you want to get your collection?

    Document these desires in your EOL plans. 

    If the collection will likely be sold 

    If the person inheriting the collection will likely sell it, consider including the names and contact information for a few reputable dealers who can help sell the collection. 

    Chances are, you are in the best position to know the people who can help with the collection. Especially if the person who will be inheriting it isn’t well-versed in the area, don’t make them figure out who is reputable and who can help. 

    Don’t leave them to pick a name at random out of the phone book. 

    And if you know of other collectors who might be interested in buying the collection, consider leaving their names and contact information as well. 

    If the collection will likely be kept intact

    Even if the contents of your collection will likely be kept intact by the person who inherits it, you may still want to consider including the names of some reputable dealers.

    The new owner of the collection may still want to get the collection appraised for insurance purposes.

    Side Note On Digital Music 

    The digital music collection that you bought online? In most cases, you don’t own that music and can’t leave it to anyone. 

    In the user agreements to digital music sites like iTunes, they state you are buying a non-transferable license. Meaning: you can use the music during your life, but you can’t transfer it to anyone else. 

    Read the user agreement of the site where you purchased your music to find out more.