Homeentertainment newsSony Music will acquire Queen's catalog for £1 billion

Sony Music will acquire Queen’s catalog for £1 billion

Sony Music is in the process of acquiring the Queen Music collection and a variety of other rights for £1 billion (about $1.27 billion). Hits was the first to report the revelation; according to their article, founding members Brian May and Roger Taylor, who are still on tour with vocalist Adam Lambert, will keep the only money not covered by the arrangement for live performances. One other bidder was thought to come quite close but fell short at $900 million.

Songs by Queen, such as “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Another One Bites the Dust,” “Radio Ga Ga,” “39,” “Somebody to Love,” and “You’re My Best Friend,” as well as the evergreen stadium-shakers “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions,” are incredibly popular around the world and bring in a substantial amount of money for the band.

The success of the 2018 biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody” demonstrates the potential for the group’s name and image rights, as well as the possibility of a jukebox musical that might premiere in London or on Broadway and tour forever.

The group’s recorded music rights for the United States and Canada, which Disney purchased for an undisclosed sum sometime in the 2000s after initially signing a $10 million licensing agreement in 1991, complicate the catalog, which has been in play for several years and has been moving closer to Sony in recent months.

Those rights will stay with Disney in perpetuity, however, some band members’ remaining income from them will be transferred to Sony after the agreement is completed. Similarly, when the group’s existing distribution arrangement with Universal ends in 2026 or 2027, Sony will take over in all markets other than the United States and Canada.

Representatives from Sony Music, Sony Music Publishing, Disney’s Hollywood Records, and the group all rejected or did not reply for comment. However, in Sony’s case, this is not surprising given that the company rarely comments on catalog acquisitions, and its nine-figure deals for Bruce Springsteen’s publishing and recorded-music rights, as well as Bob Dylan’s recorded music rights, were never officially confirmed but are widely known in the industry.

Freddie Mercury on vocals and piano and John Deacon on bass joined May and Taylor, who had previously performed as a trio under the name Smile when they founded Queen in London in 1970.

Multiple record labels were originally passed on to the group before signing with EMI. That label published Queen’s self-titled debut album in 1973, which included the May-penned hit “Keep Yourself Alive,” as well as all subsequent studio albums (except the Disney release in the United States and Canada).

While the group had success in the United Kingdom with the songs “Sband Members Rhye” and “Killer Queen,” their worldwide breakthrough came in 1975 with “Bohemian Rhapsody,” a Mercury-penned mini-symphony that has become one of the longest and most bizarre hit singles of all time.

Every member of the group contributed to the group’s meteoric rise to fame, with Mercury’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” topping the charts in 1977, May’s “We Will Rock You” in 1977, Deacon’s “Another One Bites the Dust” in 1980, and Taylor’s “Radio Ga Ga” in 1984.

Although they never dominated the United States on the same scale as other territories, the band played stadiums all over the world and held the all-time attendance record for a single concert for several years, with an estimated 600,000 people attending their 1985 performance at the Rock in Rio Festival in Brazil. Mercury tragically caught the AIDS virus and died of its effects in 1991.

The music of Queen, particularly the songs “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions,” which are stadium staples, and the continued touring by May and Taylor, who are now in their mid-seventies, ensure that the group’s legacy will live on.

Abubakar is a writer and digital marketing expert. Who has founded multiple blogs and successful businesses in the fields of digital marketing, software development. A full-service digital media agency that partners with clients to boost their business outcomes.

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