We catch up on this week’s music publishing news, from key deals and signings to new hires, legislation and more.
Deals and Signings
Peermusic signs Joseph ‘Killbeatz’ Addison to global deal (Music Week)
A three-time Producer Of The Year winner at the Vodafone Ghana Music Awards (VGMAs) in 2013, 2014, and 2018, Killbeatz has worked with the likes of Ed Sheeran, Fuse ODG, Sarkodie, R2Bees and WizKid.
Universal Music Publishing Goes on Signing Spree, Via Zoom (Variety)
Universal Music Publishing Group has announced multiple songwriter signings, all of which took place in the past few weeks over Zoom.
Round Hill Acquires Catalog Of Goo Goo Dolls Frontman Johnny Rzeznik (MBW)
Round Hill Music has acquired the catalog of Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter and Goo Goo Dolls frontman Johnny Rzeznik.
Royalties & PROs
PRS for Music pays out record $215m in April 2020 distribution (MBW)
British collection society PRS for Music has reported a record April royalty distribution of £174 million (approximately $215m) to its members, which marks a 15% year-on-year increase.
ASCAP Warns of Immediate ‘Disruption’ in Member Payments Due to Coronavirus (Billboard)
ASCAP has delayed payments scheduled for April 6 until April 28 in a move to ensure quarterly writer payouts are fully funded.
Sound Royalties Extends $20 Million No-Cost Funding Program (Music Row)
Sound Royalties has extended its $20 million, no-cost funding program application deadline to May 16. Songwriters, performing artists, producers, independent labels, distributors and publishers receiving royalty income can apply for financing on a one-year repayment schedule, with no fees or costs.
Pro Music Rights formally recognized as performance rights organization by National Religious Broadcasters Music License Committee (MBW)
PMR’s announcement follows last month’s news that the company filed an antitrust lawsuit against what it says is “the entire music industry”.
TikTok has label licences, but publishers are threatening to sue (Music Ally)
According to the Financial Times, NMPA boss David Israelite described a lawsuit against TikTok by its members as a “likely future step”.
Social Distance And Livestreams: Protecting Music Copyright (Law 360)
Whenever a performance of a musical work is streamed over the internet, there are at least two sets of copyright interests involved: the exclusive right to publicly perform a musical work and the exclusive right to reproduce, prepare derivatives and distribute copies of a work.
The legal underbelly of livestreaming concerts (Cherie Hu)
Amidst this ongoing surge in activity, one important element has been surprisingly under-addressed: Licensing.
Burying Blurred Lines. Finally… (Plagiarism Today)
It was one of the biggest mainstream copyright stories of the past decade and it sent shockwaves through the songwriting community with many wondering which of their songs were now suddenly infringements.
Lockdown – But Not Out: How Music Publishers Are Responding to the Coronavirus Crisis (Synchblog)
A look at how the publishing world has risen to the threat and what it is doing to safeguard the business and its writers for the future.
Mercy Mercy Me: Assessing the Impact of Covid-19 on the Music Industry and Sync Community (Synchblog)
We look at the initial fallout from coronavirus, hearing stories from across the music sector to discover just how disruptive the pandemic has already been.
John Prine, a ‘Songwriter’s Songwriter,’ Remembered by His Music Publisher (Variety)
John Prine, who died Tuesday of complications from coronavirus, might not have been a household name — at least not in households that didn’t contain songwriters — but he was certainly one of the greats of the past 50 years.
How Publishers Are Using Remote Sessions to Keep the Music Flowing (Billboard)
With songwriters forced into self-isolation, publishers turn to digital platforms to foster collaboration.
Kobalt leaders Willard Ahdritz and Laurent Hubert on the indie giant’s long-term plans (Music Week)
Willard Ahdritz and Laurent Hubert have spoken to Music Week about their new roles as chairman and CEO of Kobalt. Hubert took over as CEO in January, with founder Ahdritz moving ‘upstairs’ to the chairman’s role.
What the CARES Act Stimulus Package Means for Music: A Guide for Workers & Businesses (Billboard)
The CARES Act, a $2 trillion coronavirus economic stimulus package signed into law March 27, includes some of the most far-reaching benefits for gig economy workers and small businesses in U.S. history.
A Guide to Remote Music Education Resources During the Coronavirus (Updating) (Billboard)
An extensive list of low-to-no-cost online music education resources currently being offered by a variety of companies, schools and organizations, from the Berklee College of Music to SoundCloud to Fender guitars.
Lastly… are you up to scratch on your music publishing acronyms? Why not take inspiration from Songtrust:
Wheeee! A music publishing acronym bonanza! Wash your hands! Stay safe! (We feature in the C's) https://t.co/Uc56ubyzio
— CMRRA (@CMRRA) April 7, 2020