> I heard if you change it enough, there is
> nothing they can do about it.
This is an urban myth that goes around in the novice circles. Every sampled piece that ends up in a commercial song. that was used from a published song, gets licensed and then royalties are paid. As for users like you and me who probably won't have a top 40 hit, sure, go ahead and rip away. But if you take your music seriously, you don't want to do this. You never know when something commercially viable is going to come out of your sequencer and the last thing you want is to get sued by the copyright holder. Actually, with most commercial publishers, even the smaller ones, they flat out will ask you to sign a document that your samples are clean or licensed.
But let's reverse this for a sec, if your goal is to blantanly rip some loops from a commercial track, and then use it as background to your music, go ahead. What usually will happen is the copyright holder will get a hold of you at some point and you will be required to pay royalties. But THIS only happens if your tune is on the radio. Did you know the artist/publisher get paid each time their tune is played on the radio?
> For example a snare drum sound on a
> commercially recorded CD. How are they
> even gonna prove anyone took the snare
> sample from a commercial recording if the
> sound criminal edited it heavily so it
> sounded different? It would be like using
> the sampled sound as a template or a
> foundation, and then the sound criminal
> builds on that foundation to create whole
> new works of madness, until the original
> foundation/template wasn't recognizable
This is also a myth. The bottom line, you will only get busted if your tune ends up getting played on the radio, downloaded from the internet, or ends up on some kind of commercial cd. Ever hear of watermarking? This is a digital id that is embedded in most all audio formats today. The naked ear can't hear it. But you can "view" it with proper decoding software. The technology has been around for a few years now. Some users argue it was being done as long as 20 years ago. But it really started being used when the rap/dance/loop type stuff started happening. Then they could simply run the decoder software in a court of law, or similar legal venue, freak the artist out, and collect royalties.
With today's tools, libraries, sound modules, there really is no need to steal samples from un authorized sources. Be original, tweak the sounds you have now! Or spend a few bucks and buy some good libraries.