Daniel J. Schacht Partner (510) 451-3300 dschacht@donahue.com Download vCard LinkedIn

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A good lawyer is like a good bass player – working hard in the background so those in the spotlight can shine. Daniel Schacht helps creative people succeed by guiding their business and protecting their rights. His past and current clients include world-renowned musicians and companies in the music and technology space, including numerous members of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, hip hop legends, China’s largest online content distributor, and the number one app. In addition to his licensing and business practice, Daniel’s copyright and trademark litigation experience includes serving as co-counsel in the successful “Happy Birthday” lawsuit, described by The New York Times as “a lawsuit for the ages,” that put the world’s most popular song in the public domain, and as lead counsel in the prominent Wixen v. Spotify lawsuit.

Daniel heads the firm’s Music and Entertainment practice and co-chairs the Intellectual Property Practice Group. He also regularly teaches Music Law at his alma mater, U.C. Berkeley School of Law, provides California Lawyers for the Arts with pro bono services and seminars on the law and business of music, served on the boards of Oakland Art Murmur and the Great Wall of Oakland, and serves as pro bono counsel to two of Oakland’s Community Benefit Districts. During law school, Daniel served as president of both the Sports and Entertainment Law Society and Parents at Boalt, and was a member of the Berkeley Technology Law Journal. Before law school, he was a bassist for dozens of bands you’ve never heard of.

Professional & Community Affiliations

  • Law Firm Partner, Startup Legal Garage, University of California, Hastings College of the Law
  • Member, Alameda County Bar Association
  • Member, Rotary Club of Oakland
  • Member, California Lawyers for the Arts
  • Former Member, Board of Directors, Great Wall of Oakland
  • Former Member, Board of Directors, Oakland Art Murmur


  • Recipient, American Jurisprudence Award for Intellectual Property in Entertainment
  • Recipient, Elizabeth Clark Volunteer of the Year Award, Downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt-Uptown Community Benefits Districts, 2017

Recent Speaking Engagements

September 14, 2019 | San Francisco, CA
West Coast Songwriters 39th Annual Music Conference
West Coast Songwriters

March 14, 2019 | Oakland, CA
The MMA: The Future of Music and What You Should Know
California Lawyers for the Arts

January 25, 2019 | San Francisco, CA
A Grand Re-Opening of the Public Domain
Internet Archive and Creative Commons

July 25, 2018 | Berkeley, CA
CLA Pro Bono Clinic Program
California Lawyers for the Arts

June 19, 2018 | Oakland, CA
Music and Copyright Law: An Overview of Copyright Law in the Music Industry
Alameda County Bar Association

April 24, 2018 | Oakland, CA
The Merch Table: Licensing & Merchandising for Creative Artists
California Lawyers for the Arts

March 01, 2018 | Oakland, CA
Discover Oakland Innovation: Music & Technology

September 29, 2017 | Oakland, CA
Oakland Chamber of Commerce – Oaklanders Talk Tech
Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce

September 12, 2016 | Oakland, CA
The Forgotten Asset: Copyright Law for Estate Planners
East Bay Estate Planning Council

September 11, 2015 | Oakland, CA
IP Attorney Daniel Schacht Moderates Panel at Oaklanders Talk Tech @ Pandora
Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce

Past Speaking Engagements

  • The Merch Table: Licensing & Merchandising for Creative Artists, California Lawyers for the Arts, April 16, 2015
  • Crossing the Digital Divide, 32nd Annual Music Business Seminar: Licensing and Merchandising in the Music Business, California Lawyers for the Arts, January 31, 2015
  • Music Law Essentials Series, California Lawyers for the Arts
    • Contract Fundamentals in the Music Industry, May 20, 2014
    • Trademark Fundamentals in the Music Industry, April 17, 2014
    • Copyright Fundamentals in the Music Industry, March 25, 2014