Bob Dylan Sells Entire Songwriting Catalog to Universal Music Publishing

  • Last Updated:
  • Apr 3rd, 2021 3:54 pm
9 replies
Deal Guru
Aug 5, 2006
10075 posts
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The rare commercial music artist who has controlled ownership of all his work and is now being rewarded for it, good for him.
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Deal Guru
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Mar 12, 2005
11369 posts
I read that earlier today. I guess it makes sense. If your an older artists, you've only got so many years left. You can only collect so much from the royalties every year. Then it goes to your estate. Why not sell it when you've only got so many years left a head of you, and then you can spend the money :)

It is pretty cool that up until this point he owned the copyrights on his own music. That's a pretty big rarity.
Deal Fanatic
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Mar 20, 2009
9329 posts
What a sell out!!! Judas!!!!!!

https://ultimateclassicrock.com/bob-dyl ... s-concert/
Bob Dylan’s decision to go electric didn’t sit well with a lot of fans, who felt that he had sold out folk music for a rock 'n’ roll payday. It all came to a head on May, 17, 1966, during one of the last stops on his world tour.
In case it isn't clear - I'm totally joking. Just a reference to how hostile his original 60's fanbase became when he started using electric guitars for concerts. Pretty funny that it would take 50+ years for him to actually sellout (his catalogue).
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Deal Expert
Dec 26, 2010
24819 posts
Well, when you get old...

Michael Moorcock sold the rights to Elric and other properties since he is now in his 80s and (I guess) wants to leave something for his offspring for the future. Same thing happened with Tolkien's works when his grandson got hold of the estate. Probably going to see a lot more of this as these people reach a point where they know they can't go on holding out much longer. Corporations can just wait you out...
Deal Fanatic
Nov 1, 2006
9443 posts
Lots of rumours about how much is involved. USD300m is being reported by multiple sources. I guess we'll never actually find out.


From Rolling Stone "Prior to taking his deal with Universal Music Publishing Group, Bob Dylan turned down a $400 million bid from Merck Mercuriadis’s Hipgnosis Songs Fund, a source familiar to the situation tells Rolling Stone."
Deal Expert
Jul 23, 2007
16366 posts
Missed news of a lawsuit filed in January by lawyers of co-writer of several songs on the Dylan album Desire
Dylan's lawyers further detail their legal argument to dismiss Jacques Levy's claims

https://variety.com/2021/music/news/bob ... 234938835/

Unrelated to this specific lawsuit but relevant to the oft exploitative music business, Variety also posted an article yesterday concerning the pervasive practice of artists claiming undeserved songwriting credit for ill gotten royalties

https://variety.com/2021/music/news/son ... 234939379/

Maybe abolish work for hire or at least undertake some meaningful reform
Deal Guru
May 9, 2007
13832 posts
Vancouver Island, BC
The times, they are a-changin..
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Deal Expert
Jul 23, 2007
16366 posts
scoper wrote: The rare commercial music artist who has controlled ownership of all his work and is now being rewarded for it, good for him.
Apparently Paul Simon is another

He's the latest artist to sell his catalogue and one contributor to NBC takes the opportunity pass judgement on the septuagenarian (almost octogenarian) place in history

https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/p ... cna1262845


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