Troublesome Waters

This is where you can post a request for a hymn search (to post a new request, simply click on the words "Hymn Lyrics Search Requests" and scroll down until you see "Post a New Topic").
Site Admin
Posts: 942
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2018 6:27 am

Re: Troublesome Waters

Post by steveliu » Thu Jul 07, 2022 5:51 am

I should say I'm not a lawyer, but I can share some of my findings with you.

I started with a search at the US Copyright Office.

I see that there are a number of results. Most of them are probably going to be copyrighted performances (including the most famous by Johnny Cash), but you'll also find references to copyrights of the written music. I do see a copyright that's associated with Mrs. J.B. Karnes and Ernest Rippetoe, which corroborate the posts by her family members here.

But here's where the story gets a little messy.

This song was part of a large collection of songs maintained by Stamps-Baxter. In 1998, Brentwood-Benson Music Publishing (which owns Stamps-Baxter) filed for a copyright claim on these songs--at the US Copyright Office you'll see this collection listed as '"Glory Special" & 19,618 other titles'. But Brentwood-Benson Music Publishing appears to have shut down in 2021. So what happened to the 60,000+ copyrights that it managed (including the entire Stamps-Baxter library?)

My search finally took me to the BMI Website, where I did find a reference to "Troublesome Waters" as written by Mrs. Karnes. It appears the copyright is still valid and owned by Universal Music / Capitol CMG, which acquired the entire Brentwood-Benson library.

Here's their contact info:

P.O. BOX 5085
(615) 371-4300

I'll be honest, I'm not sure if you call or write to them that even they'll have a straight answer for you, but it's probably the closest you'll come to getting permission from the current copyright holder. Good luck and godspeed!
Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google Adsense [Bot], Semrush [Bot] and 4 guests