Yesterday, Today, & FOREVER The King of Pop

Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing

Bittersweetness: Michael Jackson’s ATV Music Publishing

Initially, the news broke my heart and brought tears to my eyes.

He worked so hard and suffered so much for it.

What a great investment it was.
He said he would never sell it…and HE never did. But he is no longer here.

So perhaps cashing out is for the best now, nearly seven years after his passing. His children will all be grownups soon and I can’t help but to think that he would not want them to have to carry the burden that goes along with being co-owners of the largest music publishing catalogue in the world; though it was one he proudly and bravely carried himself for various reasons, including as a business example to other artists.

Music History will forever have to acknowledge the fact that Sony/ATV came to be because of Michael Jackson, the investment and deal he was wise enough to make.

Rest easy Michael.

Michael Jackson’s ATV Catalogue: One of the Smartest Investments in Music HIStory






Michael Jackson is still “Bad” 25 years after album





New York, NY – Twenty-five years after the phrase “Who’s Bad” became a generation’s
cultural catchphrase, Epic/Legacy Recordings, in collaboration with the Estate of
Michael Jackson, will celebrate the legendary album and record breaking BAD tour on
September 18, 2012 with the release of a deluxe package, BAD 25, which includes three CDs,
two collectible booklets, and features the first ever authorized DVD release of a concert from the
record breaking BAD tour.

“The era of BAD represented Michael’s creative ‘coming of age’ as a solo artist in charge of
every aspect of his career – from recording to touring to endorsements to merchandising. This
was the first album on which nearly all of the songs were written by Michael. It was also was
the first album in history to produce five consecutive #1 singles and it took 2 ½ decades for
another artist to match that success. It was also the first time Michael would tour as a solo artist
– his vision, his decisions on what the show would be. The enormous success of the BAD album
and tour was a pivotal moment in Michael’s growth as a composer, performer and producer
cementing his role as the King of Pop. We are thrilled to celebrate such an historic era in
Michael’s career with this release”, stated John Branca and John McClain, Co-Executors of the
Estate of Michael Jackson.

The BAD 25 anniversary deluxe edition will feature three CDs and 1 DVD as follows:

• The highlight of the package is the DVD of Michael’s legendary July 16, 1988 concert at
Wembley Stadium. The concert is not a compilation of performances, but rather one
complete show, exactly as Michael performed it for Prince Charles, Princess Diana and
the 72,000 fans who were in the audience for that night’s sold out show. This show was
one of the record-breaking seven nights played at the venue attended by more than half a
million people – three times that many people tried to purchase tickets. The DVD was
sourced from Michael Jackson’s personal VHS copy of the performance as shown on the
JumboTrons during the concert. This footage was only recently unearthed and is the only
known copy of the show to exist. The visuals have been restored and the audio quality
enhanced so that fans can share in the excitement of that famous night

• A CD of the re-mastered original BAD album

• A CD containing previously unreleased material recorded in Michael’s personal studio at
Hayvenhurst. This material includes early demo versions of songs from the album as
well as demos for songs not included on the final album. All of this material is being
released as it was recorded during the BAD sessions. Nothing has been added. In
addition, this CD will also include new remixes from internationally renowned

• A CD showcasing the audio from the sound truck recordings of the July 16th Wembley
performance. The first-ever live Michael Jackson CD to be released, this is the only
concert from the BAD Tour known to exist on multitracks

This magnificent 3 CD/1 DVD box set will also include two extensive booklets with yet unseen
photos from the recording sessions, video sets and the concert tour, the original BAD cover art, a
two-sided poster and more. A BAD 25 two CD standard edition featuring the original album
plus the CD of demos and new remixes will also be made available as will a stand alone edition
of the DVD and a picture disc of the original album.

On June 5 in the U.S. (June 4th ex-U.S.), Epic / Legacy Recordings will re-release the original
first single from the album “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You” as a CD Single with a previously
unreleased bonus track from the BAD sessions, “Don’t Be Messin’ ‘Round (demo).” This is a
Wal-Mart exclusive CD single in the U.S. and will not be available digitally.

On June 26 a replica edition of the original 7″ vinyl of this single with the original B-side “Baby
Be Mine” will be made available to the world. The first single for BAD, “I Just Can’t Stop
Loving You,” was originally released on 7″ vinyl in 1987. The 7″ single edit of the song has
only been available on that original 7″ vinyl until now.

Recently, Pepsi announced an exclusive global partnership with the Estate of Michael Jackson as
part of its new “Live for Now” campaign. Starting this month, Michael Jackson and Pepsi fans
in more than 20 countries around the world will experience this partnership in a variety of ways,
including a retail campaign featuring one billion special edition Michael Jackson Bad 25 Pepsi
cans, live events, and opportunities for fans to access special edition merchandise and new music
from BAD 25.

The BAD album was the third Michael Jackson album produced by Quincy Jones and was
originally released on August 31, 1987. It was monumental in many ways; Michael wrote nine of
the album’s eleven tracks and received co-producer credit for the entire album. The album was #1
around the world, made history with five consecutive #1 singles on the Billboard chart, produced
ten chart-topping singles, nine ground breaking short films and to date, the Bad album
has generated over 45 Million units in sales. BAD was nominated for six Grammys and won
two; the album earned Michael the first-ever Video Vanguard Award at the MTV VMA Awards.
Songs on the original album are: “Bad,” “The Way You Make Me Feel,” “Speed Demon,”
“Liberian Girl,” “Just Good Friends” featuring Stevie Wonder, “Another Part of Me,” “Man in
the Mirror,” “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You,” “Dirty Diana,” “Smooth Criminal,” with “Leave
Me Alone” added to the album once released.

The BAD World Tour was Michael’s first concert tour as a solo artist. The legendary tour
included 123 concerts attended by more than 4.4 million fans over sixteen months. When it
concluded, the tour had shattered all previous touring records for attendance and total gross
revenue adding three new entries in the Guinness World Records for the largest grossing tour in
history, the tour with the largest attended audience and the most sold out shows at Wembley

BAD25 DVD Teaser

More details on this and other exciting projects relating to BAD’s 25th anniversary will be
announced soon.

The Michael Jackson Estate

Sony-EMI Deal Reunites Jackson 5 Songs With Michael Jackson

In the years after Michael Jackson became an international superstar, the song “I Want You Back” took on a new, reflexive sort of meaning for him.

Flush with cash from the stratospheric success of his solo career, Jackson thought seriously about buying the publishing rights to some of the songs he’d recorded years earlier as a member of the Jackson 5–including “I Want You Back,” one of hundreds in Motown’s Jobete catalog, then owned by the legendary Berry Gordy and his sister. Despite serious interest from Jackson, who was “like a son” to Gordy, the music mogul sold a 50% stake in the catalog to EMI for $132 million in 1997.

But dreams often take a lifetime to achieve, and the King of Pop seems to have realized this one posthumously. On Friday, a Sony-led team of investors purchased EMI’s entire publishing catalog for $2.2 billion. The group includes billionaire David Geffen, the Blackstone Group’s GSO Capital Partners LP, and none other than the estate of Michael Jackson (its stake is nested within Sony’s 38% share of EMI, according to sources close to the negotiations).

The move makes sense for reasons beyond just the sentimental. Michael Jackson’s estate still co-owns the separate Sony/ATV publishing catalog in a joint venture with Sony; that company, headed by former EMI chief Marty Bandier, will administer the newly-acquired EMI assets on behalf of the investors.

Still, the reunion is little more than a drop in the financial bucket. Because Sony/ATV (The Michael Jackson Estate)  will soon begin receiving administrative fees from the EMI catalog’s new owners, its own value is likely north of $2 billion as well.

As for Jackson, his estate has raked in half a billion dollars since his death two and a half years ago. And though the King of Pop’s posthumous concert flick was called This Is It, he’s just getting started from a posthumous earnings perspective. Jackson’s Immortal World Tour, a partnership with Cirque du Soleil, is grossing $2.4 million a night; plans call for over 100 shows a year for each of the next three years.


Sony/ATV News



Michael’s Guardian: Is Sony Music Suspect?

They gather on social networking sites, message boards and chat sites
to discuss and organize the information they have spent the last eleven
months digging up. The conspiracy theories regarding the murder of
Michael Jackson are no longer theory.

June 3, 2010 – As the year closes on the death of the most successful pop music star in history, many fans have channeled their mourning into
something a little more constructive.

They gather on social networking sites, message boards forums and chat
sites to discuss, share and organize the information they have spent
the last eleven months digging up. The conspiracy theories regarding
the murder of Michael Jackson are no longer just theory. They are
compelling ties of information in some long forgotten battles the pop
star has had with business associates, attorneys and the recording
label he generated billions of dollars for during his 20 years with
Sony (after it bought out CBS and Epic Records).

The story that is unfolding across Twitter, Facebook and chatrooms from
across the world would leave any creative-savvy director drooling for
the rights to make it into a movie. But is it fantasy or are the fans
really on to something?

What started as a simple, single suspect in Jackson’s death has grown
into an international, multi-teamed investigation that has turned up
motive that ensnares ex-Jackson employees, business managers,
attorneys, financiers and multi-national corporations; one of them
being the last label for which Jackson recorded. Sony Music Corporation.

Those unfamiliar with Jackson’s battles with Sony would have to become
educated with the struggle Jackson had back in 2002 with his last
original album, “Invincible”. His wrangling with Tommy Mottola, then
head of Sony, made headlines. Jackson accused Mottola of being a
“racist” and a “devil” during a speech he made at a press conference
held by Reverend Al Sharpton over the treatment of black artists by the
recording industry. Things went downhill from there.

Prancing over the Facebook pages of Jackson support groups, you can
find diagrams of inter-business relationships around Jackson during his
last seven years, compelling graphs and time lines of intersecting
events amongst thousands of pictures of Michael Jackson. What is
striking is that as this has been building since the death of the
singer last year, nary a word has been mentioned in the press. Even
live U-Stream interviews with various members of the Jackson Camp has
drawn little attention. The fans want to know why, but believe they
already know.

Web sites such as,, and blog sites such as, are compiling a case
that the L.A.P.D. should be investigating, but aren’t. A case
surrounding information few outside of Jackson fanhood know about: The struggle between Michael and Sony over ownership of a multi-billion dollar music catalog.

Michael and Sony shared 50% of this catalog after Michael sold half of
his ownership to Sony in 1995. This is the same catalog that comprised
of about 250 of the “Beatles” songs, “Little Richard” and others. Back
in 2002, Michael went public with Sony’s attempt to sabotage his album
“Invincible” to force him into bankruptcy to get him to put his 50% up
for sale. The following year, a damaging documentary about Michael
Jackson made by a BBC employee, Martin Bashir, surfaced and
investigations into alleged child abuse from Jackson began.

The investigations made by fans all over the world is compelling. The
linkage of personal business relationships, conflicts of interest,
politically motivated corruption in the California justice department,
Payoffs and campaign favors, a forged will, a planned murder, a concert
promoter and the media itself have been documented and linked. If you
ever want to solve a case, ask a fan of the victim.

What incentive do Jackson fans have, to pour what one fan posted “eight
to ten hour days” investigating business and tax records, campaign
contributions and interviews?

“It’s all for love . . .” Is posted all over the boards.

Regardless of the sensationalism of the story unfolding, fans are
frustrated. They are frustrated because they feel that Michael Jackson,
is again, not being treated fairly by the justice system in L.A.
County. The fans believe that Dr. Conrad Murray was treated much better
for murdering Michael, then Michael was treated for a crime he did not
commit. They cite the case of Richard Fine as proof that Michael’s
murderer will never get justice.

Is Sony Suspect? Was Michael Jackson murdered over the multi-billion
dollar value of MiJac and Sony/ATV music catalogs? Did L.A. County
have incentive to charge Michael’s doctor with only involuntary
manslaughter instead of murder? Are campaigns in L.A. County being paid
for by multi-national corporations tied to Michael Jackson to throw the
investigation? Did AEG, Michael’s concert promoter conspire with Sony
and Michael’s estate handlers to profit from Michael’s death before he
even died?

If that is what happened, the state of California should be embarrassed
that fans are handling the investigation better than they are.

If that is not what happened, it would sure make an excellent movie!

About Michael’s Guardian:
Writer and blogger covering breeches of Constitutional and Civil Rights

Company Contact Information
Michael’s Guardian
Bonnie Cox
210 Bynum Ridge Road
Phone : 410-838-2232


Annual profits up at Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing



Michael Jackson, Susan Boyle Boost Sony Results

May 13, 2010

By Andre Paine, London

Sony Corp’s Music division – including Sony Music Entertainment, Sony Music Entertainment Japan (SMEJ) and the 50% stake in Sony/ATV – reported a 35% year-on-year increase in sales to 522.6 billion yen ($5.6 billion) in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2010.

The operating income increase was primarily due to
improved results for Sony Music Entertainment and Sony Music
Entertainment Japan. There were strong performing global releases by
Michael Jackson, Alicia Keys and Susan Boyle.

In particular, Sony Music Entertainment benefited
from hit releases, Michael Jackson catalog sales, growth in new music
related businesses such as live, film and television and sponsorship
revenue, as well as a year-on-year decrease in overhead and
restructuring costs.

n its forecast Sony Corp said sales are
expected to decrease and operating income is expected to “decrease
slightly,” as a result of the decline in physical sales and a lower
contribution to its revenues from Michael Jackson catalog compared to
the last financial year.

Billboard Business

About Sony/ATV Music Publishing:

Music Publishing, established in 1995, is a joint venture between
Sony and the Michael Jackson estate.


What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson


Publishing Corporation of the Year: Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Bigger is not necessarily better…

Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing, the smallest of the Big 4, took home this
Publishing Corporation of the Year award at the Billboard Latin Music Awards.

EMI Music

Sony/ATV Music
Universal Music
Warner/Chappell Music

Billboard Business News

Billboard Latin Music Awards

What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson



York, NY) Feb. 24, 2010 – Sony/ATV Music Publishing has captured the
No. 1 spot in Billboard‘s latest ranking of U.S. market share,
controlling 20.5 percent of the 100 most popular songs played on the

In the magazine’s survey of the three months ending Dec.
31, 2009, compiled from Nielsen data, the company had three of the top
10 songwriters.  It controlled
35 of the top 100 airplay songs, including No. 1 track “Whatcha Say” by
Jason Derulo. The fourth quarter numbers increased more than three
percentage points from the previous quarter and were more than four
percentage points higher than the company’s share in the fourth quarter
of 2008.

“This is a spectacular achievement for our company,
especially when you take into account that  Sony/ATV is by far the
smallest music publishing company of the four majors, and we were
ranked fifth just three years ago,” said Martin Bandier, Chairman and
Chief Executive Officer of Sony/ATV. “Our entire U.S. creative team
contributed to this terrific accomplishment, led by an unparalleled
roster of talent, producers and writers.”

Along with
writer-performers such as Taylor Swift and Colbie Caillat, Sony/ATV
songwriters and producers represented in the Top 100 included RedOne,
Fusari, Orange Factory and JR Rotem.

About Sony/ATV Music Publishing:

Music Publishing, established in 1995, is a joint venture between
Sony and the Michael Jackson estate.

Sony/ATV Music Publishing
owns or administers over 750,000 copyrights by such artists as The Beatles, Beyonce’, Usher, Lady GaGa, Justin Bieber, Beck, Brooks & Dunn, Leonard Cohen, Neil Diamond, Bob
Dylan, Fall Out Boy, Joni Mitchell, Graham Nash,
Willie Nelson, Roy Orbison, Linda Perry, Richie Sambora, Kraftwerk,
Shakira, Taylor Swift, Akon, Wyclef Jean, Hank Williams, KT Tunstall,
and Diane Warren, among others.  Sony/ATV recently acquired both the
Leiber Stoller and Famous catalogues.

Billboard reports that SATV is the top publisher of Q4 2009! Congrats to our hard working staff and amazing artists for a great year!

Hip Hop Press


Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Ranks 2nd In U.S. Market Share



According to the November 21st issue of Billboard, Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) ranked 2nd in the “Publisher’s Quarterly,” with a solid 17.1%. In addition,
Sony/ATV publishes three of the top four songwriters of the quarter:
Taylor Swift (#1), RedOne (#2), and Lady Gaga (#4).

Sony/ATV also publishes six of the Top 20 Publishing Songs of the quarter:
#1: “You Belong With Me,” Taylor Swift
#4: “Best I Ever Had,” Boi-1da (performed by Jay Sean)
#7: “LoveGame” Lady Gaga & RedOne
#11: “Down,” Orange Factory (performed by Jay Sean)
#14: “Fire Burning,” Sean Kingston & RedOne
#18: “Battlefied,” Wayne Wilkins & Louis Biancaniello (performed by Jordin Sparks)

(Billboard, 11/21/2009)

Sony/ATV Wins Big At BMI Country Awards

The BMI Country Music Awards in Nashville proved to be another incredible evening for Sony/ATV as the company was crowned Publisher of the Year for a staggering and impressive 8th consecutive year. In addition, Sony/ATV’s Taylor Swift won Song of the Year for “Love Story” and Brooks & Dunn were awarded the BMI President’s Award.

In all, Sony/ATV won awards for 14 songs among this year’s top 50
(Sony/ATV Music Publishing Nashville had the highest percentage of
songs, with nearly 30%). Our award winning songs include:

“Do You Believe Me Now” – Joe West, D. Pahanish, T. Johnson
“Don’t” – Jim Beavers, J. Singleton
“You Look Good In My Shirt” – Tony Martin, T. Shapiro, M. Nesler
“Troubadour” – Leslie Satcher, M. Holmes
“River Of Love” – Shawn Camp, B. Burnette, D. Morgan
“Gunpowder And Lead” – Miranda Lambert, H. Little
“Love Story” – Taylor Swift
“Picture To Burn” – Taylor Swift, Liz Rose (Sesac)
“Should’ve Said No” – Taylor Swift
“Cowgirls Don’t Cry” – Ronnie Dunn, T. Mcbride
“God Must Be Busy” – Clint Daniels, Michael P. Heeney
“Let It Go” – Tom Douglas, B. Luther, A. Mayo
“Roll With Me” – Clint Daniels, T. Karlas
“Trying To Stop Your Leaving” – Jim Beavers, B. Beavers, D. Bentley

Taylor Swift Sweeps 2009 CMA Awards & AMA’s

Taylor Swift continues to dominate, both on the charts and at awards
shows. Following on the heels of her big win with “Song of the Year” at
the BMI Country Awards (for the second year in a row), Taylor cleaned
up the next night at the 2009 Country Music Awards ceremony in
Nashville. Her astonishing list of awards includes “Entertainer of the Year,” “Female Vocalist of the Year,” “Album of the Year” (Fearless), and “Music Video of the Year” (“Love Story”).
In addition to being the youngest artist ever named “Entertainer of the
Year” at the CMA’s, she is also the first female to win the award since
Shania Twain won in 1999. Lady Antebellum’s “I Run to You,” won “Single
of the Year.” The song was co-written by Sony/ATV’s Tom Douglas.

On November 22nd, Taylor Swift dominated the American Music Awards by
winning “Favorite pop/rock female artist,” “Favorite country female
artist,” and “Artist of the Year.”

Sony/ATV Wins 6 Aria Artisan Awards

Although the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Awards
are being held on November 26, the winners for the ARIA Artisan Awards
were already announced and Sony/ATV won a staggering 6 out of 8 awards,

Best Cover Art – Empire Of The Sun’s Walking On A Dream
Best Video – Empire Of The Sun’s Walking On A Dream
Engineer of the Year – A Tie between… DJ Debris – Hilltop Hoods, State Of The Art and Greg Wales – You Am I, Dilettantes
Producer of the Year – Empire Of The Sun and Donnie Sloan with Peter Mayes – Empire Of The Sun’s Walking on A Dream
Best Jazz Album – Katie Noonan – Blackbird
Best Original Soundtrack/Cast/Show Album – Soundtrack Lisa Gerard – Balibo

Sony/ATV Cleans Up At 2009 MTV European Music Awards

Sony/ATV UK dominated at this year’s MTV European Music Awards, including the following awards:

Best Video – Beyonce – Single Ladies (Kuk Harrell)
Best Song – Beyonce- Halo (Evan Bogart)
Best Alternative – Placebo
Best New Act – Lady GaGa
Best UK & Ireland Act – Pixie Lott

Sony/ATV Music Publishing was established in 1995 as a joint venture between Sony and trusts formed by Michael Jackson.

Sony/ATV News


What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson


Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Ranks 2nd In U.S. Market Share

Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Ranks 2nd In U.S. Market Share

According to Billboard’s August 15th Publishers Quarterly,
Sony/ATV commanded 14.2% of the second-quarter publishing market share,
solidifying an impressive second place. In addition, Sony/ATV is
extremely proud of its writers Redone, Taylor Swift and Lady Gaga for
being named the top three songwriters of the second quarter.

Of the Top 20 Published Songs of the second quarter, Sony/ATV controls Lady Gaga’s Poker Face (2) and Just Dance (19), Beyonce’s Halo (6), Flo Rida’s Right Round (10) and Taylor Swift’s Love Story (15).

Sony/ATV Welcomes Enrique Iglesias to the Family

Sony/ATV recently finalized a worldwide co-publishing agreement with
internationally acclaimed singer/songwriter Enrique Iglesias.

already sold over 40,000,000 albums in a little over a decade, Enrique
is fast becoming one of the most successful artists in the history of
popular music.

His numerous hits include “Hero”, “Bailamos”, “Be With
You”, and “Escape.” As a Spanish-language singer, he has enjoyed
sixteen #1 Billboard Latin hits, more than any other artist in history.
His current hit songs include “Taking Back My Love,” which is a duet
with Ciara and the UEFA hit in Europe, “Can You Hear Me.”

View Enrique Iglesias Writer Profile

LeToya Album…Now Available!

Lady Love

August 25, 2009

Sony/ATV controls:

“Don’t Matter” (Oak)

“Tears” (Frankie Storm)

“Untitled” (J. Valentine)

Maxwell Debuts At #1

Maxwell’s July 7th release BLACKsummers’night,
debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200, with 316,000 sales in the
first week. After eight years, it doesn’t look like Maxwell has missed
a beat. BLACKsummers’night has put up the biggest first week numbers of his career, totaling 630,000 copies sold thus far (as of Friday, August 21st).

Featured Writer Profile: Taylor Swift

Signed to Sony/ATV at just 14 years old, Taylor Swift quickly crossed
over from being a young country music star to a pop phenomenon. With
over 8 million record sales under her belt, Taylor’s face and music can
be seen and heard everywhere, including the upcoming MTV Video Music
Awards (Sept. 13th), where she is both a performer and nominated for
“Best Female Video” (“You Belong With Me).

View Taylor Swift’s Writer Profile

Sony/ATV News



What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson had long history with estate executor

Michael Branca met the ‘King of Pop’ when they were both in their 20s

LOS ANGELES — A week after Michael Jackson died, his longtime lawyer and friend, John Branca, was summoned to meet with the singer’s family. He carried the pop star’s will, and with it, an answer to their eagerly awaited question:

Who was to benefit from the “King of Pop’s” estate?

“It was very difficult,” Branca recalled. “There were a lot of family members there, his sisters and most of the brothers and his mother, Katherine.”

He told them three things. Katherine would be guardian of Michael’s three children and receive 40 percent of the estate in trust. The children would also receive 40 percent. The remaining 20 percent would go to unspecified charities to benefit children.

Their reaction would seem to bode well for the days to come.

“Actually, they applauded three times when they were told who got the property,” Branca said. “They were thrilled.”

It is one reason why Branca, one of two special administrators named in that same will, says he’s surprised by the opposition that followed from lawyers representing Mrs. Jackson.

Her legal team has asserted that she should be given “a seat at the table” in executing deals for the estate. They’ve also been considering a formal challenge to the status of the special administrators, suggesting that conflict of interests and other factors may compromise the qualifications of Branca and co-executor John McClain.

Neither man is unknown to the Jackson family. During more than 20 years as the pop superstar’s lawyer, Branca, 58, was a principal architect of Jackson’s financial empire, having brokered the deal for the Beatles catalog of records; obtained the rights to master recordings of Jackson’s own songs; and negotiated the purchase of Jackson’s Neverland estate.

McClain, a childhood friend of Jackson’s, crafted a major recording career for Michael’s sister Janet, and is a successful record company executive.

Branca plays down any conflict with the Jackson family.

“Everything is going to be fine,” he said calmly during a wide-ranging interview with The Associated Press.

A wunderkind of entertainment law
Branca and McClain have already won court approval for a deal that will bring the estate $60 million from a movie made of footage shot during rehearsals for the concerts Jackson was to have performed in London. A coffee-table book also was approved. But two multimillion-dollar projects, including a deal to market Jackson merchandise, have been stalled because of objections from Mrs. Jackson’s camp.

“We’re approaching the $100 million mark if those two deals in front of the court are approved,” said Branca. “That’s pretty remarkable — in six weeks as executors, to have brought $100 million into the estate.”

A wunderkind of entertainment law when he met a young Michael Jackson in 1980, Branca is now regarded as one of the three top entertainment lawyers in the United States, a man who’s made millions for the Beach Boys, The Doors, Aerosmith, the Rolling Stones and countless other top rock acts. He represents 28 members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

“I’ve been very fortunate,” Branca said. “Growing up, I had five idols and I wound up representing all of them. Elvis was No. 1. Then the Beach Boys, the Rolling Stones, the Doors and Michael and the Jackson 5.”

Branca spent his early years in Mount Vernon, New York, but later moved to Los Angeles with his mother, actress Barbara Werle who, coincidentally, had a role in the Presley movie “Charo.” At Los Angeles City College he first majored in music, but quickly realized he wasn’t good enough for the major leagues of rock.

He pursued law instead, seeking a music-related vein soon after graduating from UCLA School of Law. He started by setting up tours for Bob Dylan, George Harrison and Neil Diamond.

“I was in heaven,” he recalled. “And then I got the Beach Boys and started my own thing.”

Meeting Michael
He represented the Presley estate for a time, but in 1980 his world changed when an intermediary asked him to meet with Michael Jackson.

“Michael was either 21 or about to turn 21 when I met him and he had never had his own (legal) team,” he said. “‘Off The Wall’ had come out and it was a big hit.”

They bonded immediately.

Michael Jackson’s inner circle

“He said, ‘Do I know you?’ It was one of those things you have in life where you feel so comfortable with a person you actually feel you do know them. The conversation is easy and the connection is effortless.”

He met Jackson’s parents briefly, and remembers Mrs. Jackson saying, “Michael, I don’t know if he’s old enough to be a lawyer.”

They were both in their 20s and about to make rock ‘n’ roll history.

Branca shepherded Jackson through the phenomenal success of the “Thriller” album in 1982 and negotiated the groundbreaking “Thriller” video — as well as a video about the making of the video. And contrary to other versions of the story, he said it was Michael’s idea to buy the Beatles catalog after Paul McCartney told Jackson he was investing in buying copyrights to famous songs.

“Michael called me up and he said, ‘Branca, I want to buy copyrights.’ I said, ‘Great.’” He bought copyrights to such songs as “Runaround Sue” and “The Wanderer,” and the work of Sly and the Family Stone.

Then came the ATV catalog that included 250 Beatles songs.

“I actually have a great note he wrote me,” he said. “It said: ‘Branca, the catalog is mine. Don’t lose it by over-negotiating.’ I framed that note.”

Jackson becomes a very rich man
Before bidding, he said he checked with Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono and McCartney’s lawyer and brother-in-law John Eastman to see if they were interested. They were not. It took a year of bidding against others — including British industrialist Richard Branson — before he closed the deal. In 1995, he merged it with Sony to create one of the largest such collections in the world.

In earlier years, Branca also helped Jackson obtain the rights to his recording masters and brokered the purchase of Neverland Ranch, originally offered for $60 million, for a final price of $17.5 million, including all furnishings.

Those deals helped transform Jackson from a rich pop star into a man of extraordinary wealth, and turned Branca’s career in the direction of buying and selling music assets. (He recently negotiated the sale of the Rodgers and Hammerstein catalog for $200 million.)

But life with Michael was not all about money, Branca says. At first they were friends, traveling to Disney World together, socializing at Branca’s home. Jackson was the best man at Branca’s first wedding, bringing with him his pet chimp Bubbles, who was clad in a tiny tuxedo. Little Richard was the minister.

Michael Jackson Branca


John Branca and Michael Jackson at Branca’s December 1987 wedding in Beverly Hills. The pair met in 1980.

“His personality,” Branca says when recalling the young pop superstar, “was just infectious.”

In 1990, Jackson tearfully told Branca he wanted to try different representation; though Branca wouldn’t confirm it, it’s been widely reported that Hollywood mogul and record company executive David Geffen advised Jackson that Branca’s influence in his affairs had grown too large. They remained apart for three years, while Branca moved on to other artists.

Branca returned in 1993, at a time when Jackson was being sued in a child molestation case he ultimately settled. But the relationship was different.

“Later on in his career he really had a line between his business and personal life,” said Branca. “As people get older, that’s not uncommon.”

Branca’s connections to Elvis would extend to Jackson when he introduced Michael to the King’s daughter, Lisa Marie Presley. Branca treasures a portrait of the two after their marriage, which is inscribed in Michael’s hand signed by the couple. It reads: “John: To the greatest lawyer of our time.”

No involvement in the will
In 1997 a will was drafted for Jackson — but not, Branca says, by him. Instead, he said he assigned it to a member of his firm who specialized in wills and trusts. It was redone in 2002 because one of Jackson’s children had not been born at the time of the first.

Branca said he played no role in advising Jackson on it, but knew the singer did not want a family member in control of his estate. Jackson also felt he did not have to take care of his brothers and sisters, Branca said.

By 2006, Branca says, his relationship with Jackson was troubled once again. The star was listening to an increasingly odd set of advisers — a revolving door of characters who Branca feared did not have the singer’s best interests at heart.

“He was surrounded and I had to resign,” he said. “He did not ask me to stay. I resigned amicably.”

And then, a little more than a month before Jackson died, the call came from Jackson’s former manager, Frank Delio.

“Michael wants you to come back,” Delio told him. “He wants you to give some thought to what you can do for him, what kind of deals.”

Branca drafted an agenda and met with Jackson on June 17 at the Forum in Los Angeles, where the King of Pop was rehearsing for his big comeback.

“I hadn’t seen him in several years,” Branca said. “We hugged each other. He said, ‘John, you’re back.’ It was very emotional. I showed him the agenda.”

It was what Jackson wanted, Branca said — including a concert movie, books and merchandising deals.

“That agenda is exactly what John McClain and I are doing now,” Branca said, “for the estate.”


News: Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing



Sony/ATV Scores It’s Highest UK Market Share
May 27, 2009 

Following a record-breaking fourth quarter in 2008, Sony/ATV’s UK
office kicked off 2009 by achieving its highest combined market share
to date with 19.8% during Q1. This secured Sony/ATV in second place for
the quarter, with Universal Music Publishing barely claiming victory
with 20.5% (a .7% lead).

Although Sony/ATV’s album market share was its best since 2006, the
majority of its success in Q1 was due to its domination of the singles
market, where it finished with an incredible 23.5%.

Out of the Top 10 UK Singles of Q1, Sony/ATV had percentages on seven
of them, including Lady Gaga’s “Pokerface” and “Just Dance,” James
Morrison and Nelly Furtado’s “Broken Strings,” Beyonce’s “Single Ladies
(Put A Ring On It),” Flo Rida’s “Right Round,” Alesha Dixon’s “Breathe
Slow,” and Alexandra Burke’s rendition of “Hallelujah.” (All
percentages from MusicWeek, 5/23/09)

Playing For Change: “Stand By Me”

Video of the song “Stand By Me” (Jerry Leiber/Mike Stoller/Ben
E. King) has been gathering huge responses from the YouTube

The track comes from an album called, “Songs Around The World”; it was
released on April 28 through Concord on Starbucks’ label Hear Music and
in just a few days, it debuted at #10 on Billboard’s album chart. It’s
all part of a project called, “Playing For Change” which is designed to
promote world peace.

For this cover version of Sony/ATV’s classic song, “Stand By Me”,
Grammy®-winning producer Mark Johnson hit on the idea of recording
street performers and little-known artists ‘live’ around the globe. The
first artist that Mark and his team recorded was Roger Ridley, a street
musician in Santa Monica, California; they then flew to New Orleans,
Louisiana, and gave a set of headphones to Grandpa Elliott, a blind
singer in the famous French Quarter, so that he could add his own
vocals and harmonica while listening to the recording of the Santa
Monica artist.

The project and that track literally mushroomed from there. Another New
Orleans musician added some metal percussion and the producers then
traveled on through Europe, Africa and South America, capturing the
performances of other musicians and singers, all of whose contributions
contributed to the final mix and this video chronicles the evolution of
the recording.

-Alan Warner

Sony/ATV Wins Big at Ivor Novello Awards

Sony/ATV had some enormous wins at the Ivor Novello Awards, the UK’s
most prestigious songwriter’s awards, held on Thursday, May 21st.
Sony/ATV’s songwriters took four of the biggest awards of the event,
with two of them – Vince Clarke and Don Black – winning the highest
career icon accolades.

Sony/ATV’s writers won the following awards:

Album: We Started Nothing
Writer/s: Julian De Martino / Katie White Performed By: The Ting Tings UK Publisher/s:
Playwrite Music (administered by Warner/Chappell Music) / Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Vince Clarke

Eg White

Don Black

Sony/ATV News

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Musical Shares Shift: Sony/ATV Music Publishing

My, how things have changed.  Once the 4th largest music publishing company in the world,
Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing now has the 2nd biggest share of the airplay pie.
Sony/ATV has made several new acquisitions since Marty Bandier took over as the CEO just a couple of years ago…

Musical Shares

May 08, 2009

By Ed Christman, N.Y.

The company
acquired the Acuff-Rose catalog (featuring classics from Hank Williams and Roy
Orbison) in 2002 for $157 million from Gaylord Entertainment.

Sony/ATV expanded its business in 2007 with
the acquisition of publisher Famous Music from Viacom. The deal was worth some
$370 million, and added 125,000 songs and sound cues to Sony/ATV’s catalog.

The growing company also scored a hit when it
acquired the catalogue of award-winning songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike
Stoller in 2007 for some $45 million.


Related Articles:

What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson

Sony/ATV Named ASCAP’s Pop Publisher Of The Year

For the first time in company history,
Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing was
awarded ASCAP’s Pop Publisher of the Year (along with EMI Music
Publishing) at the ASCAP Pop Music Awards, held in Los Angeles on April
22nd, 2009.

In addition to its 20 award-winning songs, Martin Bandier and the
entire Sony/ATV family congratulates its writers Mikkel Eriksen of
Stargate for winning the ASCAP Songwriter of the Year award and Wyclef
Jean for winning the ASCAP Creative Voice of Music award.

Sony/ATV Named ASCAP’s Pop Publisher Of The Year

EMI, Sony/ATV Win Big At ASAP Pop Music Awards
By Ed Christman, N.Y

Stargate’s Mikkel Eriksen and Tor Hermansen were named
the songwriter of the year at the 26th Annual ASCAP Pop Music Awards,
held tonight (April 22) at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel in
Hollywood. “Bleeding Love,” written by Jesse McCartney and Ryan Tedder,
was named song of the year. The song is a hit for Leona Lewis.

The publisher of the year award was presented to both
EMI Music Publishing and Sony/ATV Music Publishing, as both companies
tied with 20 award-winning songs each.

Stargate, which also won the ASCAP songwriter of the
year award in 2007, is responsible for penning six of the most
performed songs of the past year: Chris Brown’s “With You,” Ne-Yo‘s
“Closer” and “Miss Independent,” Rihanna’s “Don’t Stop the Music” and
“Take a Bow,” and Jordin Sparks‘ “Tattoo.”

The top five most performed songs of 2008 were
“Apologize,” written by Tedder; “Bleeding Love,” written by McCartney
and Tedder; “Love Song,” written by Sara Bareilles; “Low,” written by
Flo-Rida; and “No One,” written by Kerry “Krucial” Brothers, DJ Dirty
Harry and Alicia Keys.

Many of the last night’s winning songwriters were on
hand to collect their awards, according to a press release, including
multiple winners Lukasz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald, who received four awards;
Terius “The Dream” Nash, Christopher “Tricky” Stewart and Tedder, who
collected three awards each; Brothers, Stacy “Fergie” Ferguson, Andre
Merritt, Jason Reeves, and Brian Kennedy Seals, who won two awards
each; and Jimmy Jam, who won for “Bust It Baby (Part 2);” Quincy Jones
for “Good Life;” Kardinal Offishall for “Dangerous;” Johntá Austin for
“With You;” and Webbie for “Independent.”

Downtown Music Publishing artist Santi White (aka
Santigold) was honored with ASCAP’s vanguard award, which recognizes
the impact of musical genres that help shape the future of American

Ann and Nancy Wilson of Heart were presented with
ASCAP’s Founders Award, which is given to songwriters who have made
pioneering contribution to music and are considered influential.

Wyclef Jean was presented with ASCAP’s creative voice
award, which is a way to honor an ASCAP member or group whose
significant career achievements are equally informed by their creative
spirit and by their contributions to the role that a creator can play
in their community. Wyclef founded Yéle Haiti in 2005 to provide aid
and assistance to his native country of Haiti.

The complete list of winners is available at


Google News

What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson


Sony/ATV, Granada Developing TV Series

Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music to be a driving force behind new TV Series
March 13, 2009
By Ed Christman, N.Y.

Country songs can sure tell stories. Now the TV
production company Granada America wants to make some of those stories
into a series of one-hour TV dramas.

The film-producing duo of Mark Roberts and Lorena
David (“Strangers With Candy,” “Extreme Dating”) pitched the project to
Granada and will executive-produce it with veteran music supervisor
Joel C. High of Creative Control Entertainment. Dubbed “American
Storytellers,” the series will have access to at least seven songs from
Sony/ATV Music Publishing, as well as works by other yet-to-be-named

“We have worked with them for upwards of two years to
find the right songs for the project,” says Sony/ATV Nashville
president Troy Tomlinson. “The music was to be the driving force behind
the series.”

The music publisher boasts a formidable country
catalog that includes classics by Merle Haggard, Buck Owens and Roger
Miller, as well as recent hits by Taylor Swift, Kenny Chesney and
Rascal Flatts. But Sony/ATV and Granada executives declined to reveal
which songs will be used in the series until they secure all remaining
publishing and related deals.

“We have a list of songs, which are more episodes
than we are making,” says Julie Meldal-Johnsen, senior VP of business
development at Granada America. “But we’d rather keep the titles under
wraps for now.”

Top country artists whose songs will be showcased in
the episodes may appear on camera as well, she says. Once Granada lines
up deals with artists, script writers and directors, it will pitch
“American Storytellers” to TV networks, Meldal-Johnsen says. “We want
to develop it properly,” she says.

Granada America is the U.S.-based production unit of
the U.K.-based ITV, one of Europe’s largest producers and broadcasters
of TV programs. Its U.S. shows include “The Chopping Block” on NBC,
“The First 48” on A&E and “Nanny 911” on CMT.

“In any climate, it’s wonderful that the songs that
you represent are chosen to be used in such a broad outlet as
television,” Tomlinson says. “But to have it in today’s challenging
economy, it’s even more encouraging.


What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson

‘Hallelujah’ – Musicnotes Song Of The Year

Pop / Rock

Leonard Cohen‘s ‘Hallelujah’ Wins Musicnotes 2008 Song Of The Year Award

MADISON, Wis. (Top40 Charts/ By Bill Aicher/ Musicnotes) – Musicnotes, Inc., the market leader in downloadable sheet music, announced today that songwriter Leonard Cohen, and music publisher Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing, are the recipients of the seventh annual Musicnotes Song of the Year Award for the song, “Hallelujah.”

The Musicnotes Song of the Year Award is presented each year to the songwriter and publisher of the best-selling sheet music for a song made popular in the previous calendar year. 

In 2008, that song was “Hallelujah.’

‘Hallelujah’ has an interesting song history, as the song was originally released in 1984 by Leonard Cohen. In 2008, the song had a dramatic resurgence in popularity for several reasons, primarily due to its use on the popular television shows ‘X-Factor‘ in the UK and ‘American Idol‘ in the U.S. This year, expects ‘Hallelujah’ to continue its popularity since it will be featured as a song in the upcoming film, ‘Watchmen.’

The award will be shared by songwriter Leonard Cohen and Sony/ATV Music Publishing, who owns and administers the publishing rights for the song.

Throughout the years, several artists have lent their voice and interpretation of ‘Hallelujah’ including U2, Rufus Wainwright, Jeff Buckley, Imogen Heap and kd lang, among others.

Commenting on the award, Martin Bandier, Chairman & CEO of Sony/ATV Music Publishing said, ”Hallelujah’ is one of those incredible songs that never ceases to catch the attention of everyone when it is played or performed. It is a truly emotional song that cuts across all genders, genres and religions – it feels very spiritual. All of us at Sony/ATV are grateful to Musicnotes for this wonderful recognition. We are fortunate to publish this terrific song as well as to continue our long-lasting partnership with the talented and iconic Leonard Cohen.’ 


Musicnotes, the leading online digital sheet music publisher and reseller, has previously presented awards to Vanessa Carlton (“A Thousand Miles”), Linda Perry (Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful”), Evanescence (“My Immortal”), Marcus Hummon, Bobby Boyd and Jeff Hanna (“Bless the Broken Road”), Daniel Powter (“Bad Day”) and Tom Higgenson (‘Hey There Delilah’).

About Musicnotes: Musicnotes, Inc. offers an online catalog of almost 100,000 digital sheet music titles, built on the strength of content agreements with Alfred Publishing, EMI Music Publishing, Faber Music Ltd, Sony/ATV Publishing, BMG/Universal, Disney Music Publishing, peermusic, Word Music, EMI Christian, Bug Music and many others. Musicnotes is included in Internet Retailer’ list of the Top 500 Online Retailers and was recently selected by Internet Retailer as a ‘Hot 100’ site for 2009.

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The Beatles’ extraordinary music and phenomenal legacy is set to rock
across the universe in the form of a video game through an exclusive
partnership between Apple Corps Ltd., Harmonix and MTV Games, a part of
Viacom’s MTV Networks.

This partnership marks the first time that Apple Corps, along with EMI
Music, Harrisongs Ltd, and Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing, has agreed to
present The Beatles music in an interactive video game format.
Published by MTV Games and developed by Harmonix, the world’s premier
music video game company and creators of the best-selling Rock Band®,
the game will be an unprecedented, experiential progression through and
celebration of the music and artistry of
The Beatles. The game was
creatively conceived with input from Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo
Starr, along with Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison, and enjoys their
full blessing.

View Lennon/McCartney Profile

Sony/ATV Breaking News

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Sony/ATV acquires Extreme Music licence for South Africa


Sony ATV ( Michael Jackson) Music Publishing has acquired the exclusive licence for the
US-based Extreme Music library, effective 1 January 1 2009. “We are
thrilled to be representing Extreme in South Africa,” says Sony ATV
Music Publishing MD Jay Savage.

“The Extreme Music library is
one of the most used and highly respected in the world and we want to
assure production music users in South Africa that the library is open
for use across the broadest range of areas.”

Music from the
library is used in television shows, television commercials, radio
commercials, corporate videos, online content and more. The library
contains works from the likes of Quincy Jones
who has also put together
a Black American Music Anthology for Extreme.

In its Director’s
Cut library, Extreme features the work of award-winning film score
composer Hans Zimmer, as well as a host of other composers covering
every conceivable film genre, from action to thriller. The X-Series
delivers great choice to production music users – everything from “Acid
Breaks” to “Zombie Hip-Hop” is available and a whole lot more in
between (including World Music and Africa Beatz).

Finger on the pulse

is a great library to work with for all these reasons – and more,” says
Savage. “The library is able to deliver to just about every conceivable
need and that makes it the first choice for many users of production

Licensing of the Extreme Music Library is done through
NORM (National Organisation for Reproduction Rights in Music in
southern Africa), while the Johannesburg-based Sony ATV Music
Publishing South Africa handles customer service directly.

ATV also handles other production music libraries including African
Soundscape (Phillip Miller), Mid Tempo Jams Vol. 1 (Terry Pinana, DJ
Bionic, Adam Howard), African Bites & Stings (Neil Solomon, Joe
Nina, DJ Bionic), and It’s called Kwaito (Terry Pinana, DJ Bionic,

For more information, go to or

[11 Feb 2009 10:09]

What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson

Sony/ATV 2009 Grammy Winners

Feb 9, 2009



Album Of The Year
Raising Sand
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss

T Bone Burnett, producer; Mike Piersante, engineer/mixer; Gavin Lurssen, mastering engineer
Phil & David Everly, “Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On)” (100%)
Dorothy Labostrie / McKinley Millet, “Rich Woman” (100%)

Best Male Pop Vocal Performance
John Mayer

Track from: Continuum
John Mayer (100%)

Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals
Rich Woman
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss

Track from: Raising Sand
Dorothy Labostrie / McKinley Millet, “Rich Woman” (100%)

Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance
John Mayer

Track from: Where The Light Is — Live In Los Angeles
John Mayer (100%)

Best Female R&B Vocal Performance
Alicia Keys

Track from: As I Am
[J Records]
Linda Perry (30%)
Steve Moyston (20%)

Best Male R&B Vocal Performance
Miss Independent

Track from: Year Of The Gentleman
[Def Jam/Compound]
Mikkel Eriksen (25%)

Best R&B Song
Miss Independent
M.S. Eriksen, T.E. Hermansen & S. Smith, songwriters (Ne-Yo)

Track from: Year Of The Gentleman
[Def Jam/Compound; Publishers: Pen In The Ground Publishing, Universal Music-Z Tunes]
Mikkel Eriksen (25%)

Best R&B Album
Jennifer Hudson
Jennifer Hudson

[Arista Records]
Mikkel Eriksen, “Spotlight” (25%) and “Can’t Stop the Rain” (15%)

Best Contemporary R&B Album

Growing Pains
Mary J. Blige

Mikkel Eriksen, “Fade Away” (25%) and “What Love Is”(25%)
Thaddiss Harrell “Come To Me” (5%)

Best Rap Albu
Tha Carter III
Lil Wayne

[Cash Money/Universal Motown]
D. Smith “Shoot Me Down” (60%)

Best Country Album
George Strait

[MCA Nashville]
Leslie Winn Satcher “Troubadour”(50%)

Best Contemporary Folk/Americana Album
Raising Sand
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss

[Rounder Records]
Phil & David Everly, “Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On)” (100%)
Dorothy Labostrie / McKinley Millet, “Rich Woman” (100%)

Best Compilation Soundtrack Album For Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media
(Various Artists)

[Fox Music/Rhino]
Belle and Sebastian, “Piazza, New York Catcher”(100%) and “Expectations”(100%)
Ray Davies “A Well Respected Man”(100%)

Best Classical Contemporary Composition
Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems Of Bob Dylan
John Corigliano (JoAnn Falletta)

Track from: Corigliano: Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems Of Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan

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Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) is said to be worth $30 billion


Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing LLC

The King of Pop was no “Fool on the Hill” when
he invested in the music publishing business.  

Sony/ATV Music Publishing,
jointly owned by singer Michael Jackson and Sony Corporation of America, is one
of the top publishing firms in the world.  It is home to
more than 750,000 copyrights by such artists as Willie Nelson, Roy Orbison, Linda Perry, Richie
Sambora, Shakira, Diane Warren and Hank Williams, among others
including more than 250 compositions recorded by The Beatles.

Its growing current roster of chart-topping artists includes Akon,
Sara Bareilles, the Jonas Brothers, Kenny Chesney, Flo Rida, Lady GaGa,
Rascal Flatts and
Taylor Swift .  The last time
Sony/ATV was valued, it was said to be worth $30 Billion.

ATV Music was once the publishing arm of Lord Lew
Grade’s UK media empire, Associated Television (ATV). It had acquired Northern
Songs (the Beatles’ publishing business) in 1969.

Mr. Jackson acquired the Beatles catalog in 1985
when he bought ATV Music for about $47 million from Australian tycoon Robert
Holmes à Court.  He sold a 50% stake in the business to Sony for $150 million in
1995.  Sony also contributed its existing publishing business to the new
venture, forming Sony/ATV.

Other collections include the country catalogs
of Acuff-Rose and Tree Publishing.
The company
acquired the Acuff-Rose catalog (featuring classics from Hank Williams and Roy
Orbison) in 2002 for $157 million from Gaylord Entertainment.

Sony/ATV expanded its business in 2007 with
the acquisition of publisher Famous Music from Viacom. The deal was worth some
$370 million, and added 125,000 songs and sound cues to Sony/ATV’s catalog.
Famous songs include classics such as ‘Footloose,’ ‘Moon River,’ and ‘Take My
Breath Away’.

The growing company also scored a hit when it
acquired the catalogue of award-winning songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike
Stoller in 2007 for some $45 million. The Leiber Stoller catalogue contains more
than 40 Top 40 hits, including “Stand By Me”, “Poison Ivy”, and “Love Potion
#9”, as well as several songs made famous by Elvis Presley (“Hound Dog”,
“Jailhouse Rock”).

CEO Martin Bandier, formerly an executive at EMI
Group, is leading a focus on Sony/ATV’s most valuable asset, its collection of
Beatles songs. The company had historically resisted licensing Beatles
recordings for commercial use, but in 2008 Bandier announced that he favored
licensing Beatles songs for things that haven’t been licensed in the past —
under certain circumstances.

Sony/ATV licenses its songs for use in movies,
television, and advertising and collects royalties for its songwriters. It has
offices in about 40 countries.

“I want to clarify a silly rumor – the Beatles catalog is not for sale, has not been for sale and will never be for sale.” ~ Michael Jackson  2001

The Michael Jackson catalog is wholly owned by Mr. Jackson, administered by Warner Chappell, on Sony Music labels, and is not a part
of Sony/ATV.

Michael Jackson and Sony enter joint publishing venture valued at $600 million

Jet Nov.27th 1995

Megastar Michael Jackson has merged his music catalog with Sony
Corp.’s music publishing division in a joint venture reportedly valued
at $600 million.

music catalog, ATV Music Publishing, includes some 250 Beatles songs as
well as songs associated with Elvis Presley and Little Richard.

Sony/ATV Music Publishing will include all of the current and future music publishing interests of both parties.

The Sony catalog includes songs by such Sony recording artists as Mariah Carey, Sade, Bob Dylan and Neil Diamond.

Jackson’s music catalog includes such Beatles tunes as Come Together, We Can Work It Out, Hey Jude and Yesterday.

Jackson’s own songs were not included in the deal, Sony said.

said in a press statement: “The merging of ATV with Sony establishes
our commitment to create one of the largest music publishing ventures
in the world. We have been working on this for over a year and, now,
with the two of us together, the sky is our only limit.”

denied rumors that he made the merger deal with Sony because he is
having financial problems during an interview with USA Today. “This
acquistion had nothing to do with needing funds,” Jackson said. “It’s
just a great move, a corporate, entrepreneurial thing to do. It’s smart
business. It’s about growth. Everything in life to me is about growth.”

P. Schulhof, president and CEO, Sony Corporation of America, said:
“Michael Jackson is not only the most successful entertainer in
history; he is also an astute businessman. Michael understands the
importance of copyrights and the role they play in the introduction of
new technologies. In joining us for this new venture, Michael
recognizes Sony’s leadership in developing and realizing new
technologies that serve to expand the creative horizons of artists such
as himself.”

Ebony / JET Magazine




Beatles for Sale

Licensing Biz

Sony/ATV News (USA)

Sony/ATV News

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2009 Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Grammy Nominees


Dec 05, 2008

The following is a list of 2009 Sony/ATV Grammy Nominees for the 51st Annual Grammy Awards…

Album Of The Year

Tha Carter III
Lil Wayne
Babyface, Brisco, Fabolous, Jay-Z, Kidd Kidd, Busta Rhymes, Juelz
Santana, D. Smith, Static Major, T-Pain & Bobby Valentino, featured
artists; Alchemist, David Banner, Vaushaun “Maestro” Brooks, Cool &
Dre, Andrews “Drew” Correa, Shondrae “Mr. Bangladesh” Crawford, Darius
“Deezle” Harrison, Jim Jonsin, Mousa, Pro Jay, Rodnae, Skillz &
Play, D. Smith, Swizz Beatz, Robin Thicke, T-Pain & Kanye West,
producers; Angel Aponte, Joshua Berkman, Andrew Dawson, Joe G, Darius
“Deezle” Harrison, Fabian Marasciullo, Miguel Scott, Robin Thicke,
Julian Vasquez & Gina Victoria, engineers/mixers; Vlado Meller,
mastering engineer
[Universal Motown/Cash Money]

Year Of The Gentleman
Chuck Harmony, Ne-Yo, Polow Da Don, StarGate, Stereotypes, Syience,
Shea Taylor & Shomari “Sho” Wilson, producers; Kirven Arrington,
Jeff Chestek, Kevin “KD” Davis, Mikkel Eriksen, Jaymz Hardy Martin,
III, Geno Regist, Phil Tan & Tony Terrebonne, engineers/mixers;
Herb Powers, Jr., mastering engineer
[Def Jam/Compound]

Raising Sand
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss
T Bone Burnett, producer; Mike Piersante, engineer/mixer; Gavin Lurssen, mastering engineer

Song Of The Year

Love Song
Sara Bareilles, songwriter (Sara Bareilles)
Track from: Little Voice
[Epic; Publisher: Tiny Bear Music]

Best New Artist

Jonas Brothers

Best Female Pop Vocal Performance

Love Song
Sara Bareilles
Track from: Little Voice

Best Male Pop Vocal Performance

John Mayer
Track from: Continuum

Track from: Year Of The Gentleman
[Def Jam/Compound Entertainment]

Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals

Track from: Dreaming Out Loud
[Mosley Music/Interscope Records]

Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals

Rich Woman
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss
Track from: Raising Sand

Best Pop Vocal Album

Leona Lewis
[J Records/SYCO Music]

Best Dance Recording

Just Dance
Lady Gaga & Colby O’Donis
RedOne, producer; Robert Orton, mixer
[Streamline/Interscope/Kon Live]

Brian Kennedy, producer; Phil Tan, mixer
Track from: Good Girl Gone Bad: Reloaded
[Def Jam]

Best Electronic/Dance Album

Bring Ya To The Brink
Cyndi Lauper

Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album

Josh Groban

Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance

John Mayer
Track from: Where The Light Is — Live In Los Angeles

I Saw Her Standing There
Paul McCartney
Track from: Amoeba’s Secret
[Hear Music/MPL Communications Ltd.]

Eddie Vedder
[J Records]

Best Female R&B Vocal Performance

Jennifer Hudson

Alicia Keys
Track from: As I Am
[J Records]

Best Male R&B Vocal Performance

Miss Independent
Track from: Year Of The Gentleman
[Def Jam/Compound]

Can’t Help But Wait
Trey Songz
Track from: Trey Day

Here I Stand
Track from: Here I Stand

Best R&B Song

Miss Independent
M.S. Eriksen, T.E. Hermansen & S. Smith, songwriters (Ne-Yo)
Track from: Year Of The Gentleman
[Def Jam/Compound; Publishers: Pen In The Ground Publishing, Universal Music-Z Tunes]

Mikkel S. Eriksen, Tor Erik Hermansen & Shaffer Smith, songwriters (Jennifer Hudson)
[Arista Records; Publishers: Super Sayin’ Publishing/Universal Music-Z Songs, Sony/ATV Tunes, EMI Music Publishing]

Best R&B Album

Motown: A Journey Through Hitsville USA
Boyz II Men
[Decca Records]

Jennifer Hudson
Jennifer Hudson
[Arista Records]

Best Contemporary R&B Album

Growing Pains
Mary J. Blige

Back Of My Lac’
J. Holiday
[Capitol Records]

First Love
[Def Jam]

Year Of The Gentleman
[Def Jam/Compound]

Jazmine Sullivan
[J Records]

Best Rap/Sung Collaboration

Flo Rida Featuring T-Pain
Track from: Mail On Sunday
[Poe Boy/Atlantic]

Best Rap Song

T. Dillard, M. Humphrey & T-Pain, songwriters (Flo Rida Featuring T-Pain)
Track from: Mail On Sunday
[Poe Boy/Atlantic; Publishers: E-Class Publishing/Top Quality Publishing/NappyPub Music/Zomba Songs]

Best Rap Album

Tha Carter III
Lil Wayne
[Cash Money/Universal Motown]

The Cool
Lupe Fiasco
[1st & 15th/Atlantic]

[Def Jam]

Best Female Country Vocal Performance

This Is Me You’re Talking To
Trisha Yearwood
Track from: Heaven, Heartache And The Power Of Love
[Big Machine]

Best Male Country Vocal Performance

George Strait
Track from: Troubadour
[MCA Nashville]

Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals

God Must Be Busy
Brooks & Dunn
Track from: Cowboy Town
[Arista Nashville]

Best Country Collaboration With Vocals

House Of Cash
George Strait & Patty Loveless
Track from: Troubadour
[MCA Nashville]

Best Country Song

Dig Two Graves
Ashley Gorley & Bob Regan, songwriters (Randy Travis)
Track from: Around The Bend
[Warner Bros.; Publishers: Songs of Combustion Music, Music of Windswept/Famous Music, Mt. Tallac Music]

Best Country Album

George Strait
[MCA Nashville]

Around The Bend
Randy Travis
[Warner Bros.]

Heaven, Heartache And The Power Of Love
Trisha Yearwood
[Big Machine]

Best Latin Pop Album

Palabras Del Silencio
Luis Fonsi
[Universal Music Latino]

Best Latin Urban Album

La Sinfonia
La Sinfonia
[Norte/Sony BMG]

Best Regional Mexican Album

A Puro Dolor
[Warner Music Latina]

Best Contemporary Folk/Americana Album

Raising Sand
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss
[Rounder Records]

All I Intended To Be
Emmylou Harris
[Nonesuch Records]

Best Comedy Album

Flight Of The Conchords
Flight Of The Conchords
[Sub Pop]

Best Compilation Soundtrack Album For Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media

American Gangster
(Various Artists)
[Def Jam]

(Various Artists)
[Fox Music/Rhino]

Best Song Written For Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media

Say (From The Bucket List)
John Mayer, songwriter (John Mayer)
Track from: Continuum
[Aware/Columbia; Publishers: Sony/ATV Tunes, Specific Harm Music]

Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical

Closer (StoneBridge Radio Edit)
StoneBridge, remixer (Ne-Yo)
[Def Jam]

Best Classical Contemporary Composition

Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems Of Bob Dylan
John Corigliano (JoAnn Falletta)
Track from: Corigliano: Mr. Tambourine Man: Seven Poems Of Bob Dylan

Best Long Form Music Video

Where The Light Is — Live In Los Angeles
John Mayer
Danny Clinch, video director; Lindha Narvaez, video producer

Good Girl Gone Bad Live


Paul Caslin, video director; John Paveley, Ruth Paveley & Rupert Style, video producers

ef Jam/SRP Records/Mercury Music Group/Universal Music]

Related Articles:

What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson

Sony/ATV Music Publishing was established in 1995
as a joint venture between Sony and Michael Jackson.

Sony/ATV Country Publisher of the Year

Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing Nashville Earns Top Honors at BMI Country Awards 

Publishing powerhouse Sony/ATV Music Publishing
Nashville claimed its seventh consecutive Country Publisher of the Year
title at the The 56th Annual BMI Country Awards.

With 15 songs among this year’s top 50,
Sony/ATV Music Publishing Nashville (through its companies Sony/ATV
Acuff Rose, Sony/ATV Melody and Sony/ATV Tree) picked up its seventh
consecutive BMI Country Publisher of the Year win. The publishing giant
accumulated the highest percentage of copyright ownership thanks to
award songs including “Never Wanted Nothing
More,” “Famous In
a Small Town,” “Watching
Airplanes,” “Long
Trip Alone” and “Love

Song of the Year “Teardrops on My Guitar”
was co-written and recorded by Taylor Swift and published by Sony/ATV
Tree. The song earned iTunes’ no. 1 country
song of 2007 bragging rights as it achieved RIAA Digital Platinum
certification in early 2008.


Related Articles:

What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson

The business of carrying a tune

By Joshua Chaffin in New York

Published: June 23 2008 03:00 | Last updated: June 23 2008 03:00

Martin Bandier agreed last year to sign on as chief executive of
Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing, there was just one concern weighing on his
mind: Michael Jackson.

As half-owner of Sony/ATV, Mr Jackson
holds broad sway over a catalogue that boasts roughly
half a million songs, including more than 200 Beatles classics. But
while the King of Pop has proved an astute collector of music, his
legal troubles and reclusive lifestyle had sometimes paralysed
management at Sony/ATV.

“If I wanted to do a deal, I had to have
the flexibility to be able to close it quickly,” says Mr Bandier, one
of the creators of the modern music publishing industry, as he recalls
his concern.

The two men had done business before. In 1993, when
he was head of EMI Music Publishing, Mr Bandier paid Mr Jackson a
record $70m advance for the right to administer his ATV Music
catalogue. As part of the deal, Mr Bandier also agreed to sell three of
his favourite Elvis songs to the singer, who was then dating Lisa Marie
Presley. This was no small concession for a self-described “song

It is unclear whether that favour figured in Mr
‘s thinking. But, after a brief phone conversation last year, Mr
Bandier was put at ease.

“For me, it’s a piece of cake,” he says
of the relationship, still chuckling at Mr Jackson‘s insistence on
calling him “Mr Bandier”. “To his credit, Michael has given me a green

As Mr Bandier recounts it, the episode is of a piece with
his happy tenure at Sony/ATV. With two sizeable acquisitions, he has
begun to increase market share at the fourth-largest music publisher.
He enjoys the backing of a supportive boss, Sony chief executive Sir
Howard Stringer.

Just as importantly, Mr Bandier feels free from
the turmoil of his time at his former employer, EMI, where the
contribution of music publishing was often overshadowed by the chaos in
the rest of the company, and profit warnings and restructurings seemed
to lurk around the corner.

“It’s been spectacular. There’s no
other way to put it than to say that this has been the best
year-and-a-half imaginable,” says Mr Bandier, seated in a mogul-sized
office that includes his familiar wooden cigar box and the requisite
collection of autographed guitars.

In geological terms, music
publishing is one part of the music industry that is not sinking into
the ocean. In fact, it continues to grow. Publishers collect a small
royalty each time their songs are featured in films, advertisements,
concerts, wind-up toys and now video games, among other uses.

music-lover who trained as a lawyer, Mr Bandier got into publishing in
the 1970s when it was the decidedly un-sexy side of the business. His
big score came in 1986, when he and two partners acquired the CBS Songs
catalogue for $125m. Two years later, they sold to Thorn-EMI for $340m.
For the next 17 years, Mr Bandier worked to build EMI Music Publishing
into the industry leader, snapping up the Motown catalogue, among
others, and aggressively marketing their hit songs. “It’s not just
being a bank,” he says of his approach. “It’s about being proactive and
going out and getting commercials or film and TV opportunities.”

spite of EMI’s success, it came as little surprise in late 2006 when Mr
Bandier bowed out. The relationship had frayed over the years as Mr
Bandier took an increasingly dim view of senior management. “It was one
fiasco after another,” he says. For their part, EMI’s top brass tired
of the griping from an executive who was being paid more money than the
company’s then-chief executive, Eric Nicoli.

At 64, and wealthy,
Mr Bandier could easily have retired. But he was restless. At Sony/ATV,
he saw a publishing business with room to grow. Sony sweetened the
forthcoming deal by offering equity, making him a partner as opposed to
a salaried employee. “I’m at the stage of my life that I’m doing this
because I want to – not because I have to,” he says.

Once in the
job, Mr Bandier wasted little time fulfilling industry expectations
that he would become an aggressive bidder for any and all catalogues.
Last April, he paid $45m for the Leiber and Stoller catalogue, which
includes Elvis‘s “Hound Dog” and “Jailhouse Rock”.

A month later,
he won a $350m auction for Viacom’s Famous Music Publishing, which
boasts the soundtracks to Paramount films such as The Godfather .

are whispers in the industry that Mr Bandier has overpaid, but he is
unapologetic. “My philosophy has always been that I would rather spend
more on something that is climbing the charts and going to be
successful than spend half that on something where you just don’t
know,” he explains.

For all the happy talk, though, Mr Bandier
admits to suffering an emotional period following his EMI break-up and
the loss of a business he had spent his career building. It was
particularly wrenching when he would drive to his beach house and one
of his old EMI songs would come on the radio. “My wife said my face
would sort of change,” he recalls.

Six months ago, he went for
lunch with his old friend Berry Gordy, the legendary Motown Records
founder who sold his own catalogue of songs to Mr Bandier in 1997.

said, ‘Berry, let me ask you a question: Do you ever feel like you were
lost? Do you ever feel anger that you still don’t own Motown Records .
. . when you hear a song being played, and you know that you were there
when Smokey Robinson wrote it?'”

“He said, ‘yeah, all the time,'” Mr Bandier recalls. Then Mr Gordy offered a blunt bit of advice: “Get over it.”

Bandier says he finally has. The question now is, how will he take
Sony/ATV forward? Mr Stringer, he says, publicly pledged at a recent
gathering of Sony/ATV executives that he was prepared to bankroll
further acquisitions.

Mr Bandier would jump at the opportunity if
EMI were to unload all or part of its publishing group – either to
raise cash or to satisfy regulators as part of a future merger with
Warner Music.

At present, though, Sony seems more focused on
trying to buy out Bertelsmann’s share of their recorded music joint
venture, Sony BMG. The cost could exceed $1bn(£506m).

problem is that Mr Bandier’s success has encouraged a legion of
imitators. As the recorded music business collapses and the value of
publishing becomes clear, new competitors – including private equity
firms – have entered the fray and pushed up prices.

Mr Bandier is
convinced that many have overpaid, and – lacking experience – will be
forced to sell sooner or later. “At some point in time, we’re going to
be able to buy those things back at a much cheaper rate,” he predicts.

also foresees an eventual windfall from a host of new social networks,
such as MySpace, which are ramping up their music offerings and will
have to pay royalties.

In the meantime, he is focusing on
Sony/ATV’s most valuable asset – its trove of Beatles songs. “There’s
no bigger star than ‘All You Need is Love’,” he says, calling the
collection “unique”.

In 1985, he travelled to Perth to try to buy
the catalogue from Australian tycoon Robert Holmes à Court. But another
collector – Mr Jackson – bested him.

Although their offers were
comparable, Mr Jackson played a charity show in Australia. He also gave
the song “Penny Lane” to Mr Holmes à Court’s daughter, Penny.

Apple Corp, the company the Beatles created to manage their business affairs,
has balked at licensing deals over the years. Yet that seems to be
changing under Jeff Jones, the new chief executive. In the past year,
Apple and Sony/ATV have licensed Beatles compositions for use in American Idol, a Las Vegas show and a Hollywood film. They are closing in on a
multi-million dollar deal to create a Beatles-themed video game.

about making sure that the songs that we control are used in every
manner, shape and form possible,” Mr Bandier says, “and hopefully with
good taste.”

Financial Times

Sony/ATV News

What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson

Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing handlin’ their bizness

For all of the current Sony/ATV Music Publishing news goto:

Sony/ATV News (USA) * HERE *

Sony/ATV Corporate

Related Articles:

>>> 6/23/08 – The business of carrying a tune

>>> 6/16/08 – Thrillicious! Jingles Out, Cool Songs In

>>> 12/22/07 – Sony/ATV Grammy Nominees

Friday, 11/23/07

Sony ATV Nashville makes
music publishing HIStory

Staff Writer

Sony ATV Nashville
made history this awards season when it became the first publishing company to
be named country publisher of the year by all three performing rights
organizations, ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. The company’s holdings consist primarily
of the substantial music catalogs of Tree Publishing and Acuff Rose Music.

“We’ve had an amazing
year,” said Martin Bandier, chairman and CEO of Sony ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing. “I’ve been doing this for a long time, and
this has never happened before. You understand that at performing rights
organizations you have different songs, so it’s not like if you win one you can
win them all. You have different songs at BMI, different songs at ASCAP and
different songs at SESAC. … This is not a beauty contest. This is an actual
‘you’ve done an amazing job’ contest.”

Different standards used

The awards were an nounced
at three separate awards ceremonies earlier this fall. Each performing rights
organization determines its country publisher of the year in a different way.

ASCAP’s choice is based on
which company has the highest percentage of copyright ownership of ASCAP’s most
performed country music songs of the year.

BMI’s publisher of the year
is the publishing company that has the highest percentage of copyright
ownership of BMI’s 50 most performed country music songs of the year. Of those
50 country songs for 2007, Sony ATV is home to 17.

SESAC, which recognized
Hillsboro Valley Songs in addition to Sony ATV, bases its publisher of the year
award on performance activity as well.

“A few years ago, when
Sony ATV (Tree) acquired Acuff Rose publishing, it really married the two
granddaddies of Nashville country publishing together, and they kind of created
this place that can stay dominant as long as they want to stay active,”
said Jody Williams, BMI’s vice president of writer publisher relations.

“Their catalog is
unparalleled, and what you do with a publishing catalog is you take those great
old songs and then acquire new songwriters to breathe new life into the future
of the company with new copyrights,” Williams said. “So you have the
old stuff working and new stuff working, and in the event that your new writers
don’t pan out, your catalog carries you through those tough times. But what’s
happening at Sony ATV now is that the catalog and new writers are hitting on
all cylinders, so they have this undeniable force.”

Connie Bradley, senior vice
president at ASCAP, agreed, and predicted that Sony ATV will continue to win
awards in the future.

“Both of those
catalogs (Sony ATV Tree and Acuff Rose) make them a giant,” she said.
“But current hits are what made them publisher of the year at ASCAP. Not
only do they have a large number of hit songwriters, but they also have a lot
of songwriter artists, like Kenny Chesney and Rascal Flatts and Brooks &
Dunn, that account for a large portion of country airplay. So with that and the
leadership of Troy Tomlinson and his team, they’re … hard to beat.”

Sony ATV Nashville isn’t
taking its success
for granted. Troy Tomlinson, president and CEO of the company, said the staff
knew that winning top country publisher from each performing rights
organization was “a pretty amazing” feat. He said that the win is more
than just a snapshot of the last year’s activities.

“What I think can fool
people is that they can look at it in very narrow terms,” Tomlinson said.
“But the truth is that any unprecedented achievement like this doesn’t
just happen overnight or in a few months. It’s really a culmination of several
years of teamwork and commitment and just being driven.

“Yes, we’ve had an
awesome year, but signing the writers and pitching the songs it took in order
to have all this culminate has taken a longer period of time than one year to
create. We aren’t sitting up here going, ‘Wow, aren’t we wonderful.’ We know
the stars had to align for this to happen.”

Sony ATV looks to future

And don’t expect to find
Tomlinson and the other employees
at Sony ATV basking in the glow of their recent triple win.

The president said the
company is already hard at work, with its eye on sweeping the performing rights
organizations’ awards again in 2008.

“As excited and
thrilled as we are, the very next day it was, ‘OK, what are we going to do
about next year?’ ” he said. “You can enjoy it during that moment,
but the very next day you’re back to it again.”

Tomlinson attributes the
company’s success to a dedicated staff, a stable of talented songwriters and
what he calls Music Row’s open door.

“The thing that
continues to amaze and encourage me about our industry is the open door we have
to so many artists, producers and A&R people,” he said. “If we
didn’t have that, nothing would happen.”

From The Times –
Dan Sabbagh, Media Editor
July 5, 2007

Sony BMG seeks Michael Jackson’s backing for move to sign songwriters

Sony is in talks with Michael Jackson to renegotiate the terms of their music publishing joint-venture, which would allow Sony BMG, the sister company, to sign songwriters for the first time.

A clause in the existing agreement between the Thriller singer and the Japanese electronics giant prevents Sony backing a music publisher to rival their Sony/ATV venture, which has the copyrights to all 252 Beatles songs in its catalogue.

If Sony can persuade Jackson, its business partner, to relax or even erase the clause as part of the negotiations, that would allow Sony BMG, the recorded music concern, to become a part-competitor.

Sony BMG is desperate to enter the music publishing market because it would help to offset the collapse in recorded music and would allow the record label behind Justin Timberlake and Bob Dylan to sign up songwriters in tandem with acts.

Recorded music sales are expected to be off by as much as 11 per cent this year, but publishing has been more stable because it generates income from growing areas, such as radio airplay and use of music in advertising as well as CD and download sales.

Rolf Schmidt-Holz, Sony BMG’s chief executive, said in May that “we will do everything to reenter the market for music publishing”. His remarks surprised rival executives, who knew that a decision to go into publishing was not within his power. However, the existence of the previously unknown discussions explains his confidence.

Discussions between Sony and Jackson are at an early stage and could collapse. Relations between the two have been strained in the past. Sony/ATV has faced problems making acquisitions because contacting the controversial star quickly enough to agree bids has been difficult.

Jackson recently agreed to allow Sony/ATV to expand aggressively under Marty Bandier, the newly appointed chief executive. The company now also has an option, which it has so far declined to exercise, to buy a further 25 per cent of the business from its partner.

It is unclear how far the shareholder agreement between the two parties will be relaxed. There are hopes that Jackson will not have to be paid, although if that is the case he is likely to insist that Sony BMG can only sign up a handful of songwriters.

Half-owned by Sony and Bertlesmann, of Germany, Sony BMG is the second-largest recorded music company in the world, but it is unique because the company does not include a publishing arm.

The music business is traditionally split into two halves. Recorded music operations find, develop and promote artists, while music publishing units handle and manage songwriter copyrights. Its rivals Universal, EMI and Warner Music all conduct both activities.

Sony and Sony BMG declined to comment.

Sony/ATV Music Publishing To Acquire Famous Music LLC
May 31, 2007

“This is a milestone event for Sony/ATV Music Publishing,” said Michael Jackson. “The diverse collection of songs in this catalogue range from timeless classics to contemporary hits, and I am pleased to add the acquisition of Famous Music to Sony/ATV.”

SCA – NEW YORK, May 30, 2007 — Sony/ATV Music Publishing and Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA and VIA.B) today announced that they have signed an agreement for Sony/ATV to acquire Famous Music LLC from Viacom. Sony/ATV Music Publishing is co-owned by Sony and trusts formed by Michael Jackson.

“The Famous Music catalogue is a world-class asset filled with evergreen songs that people know and love,” said Martin N. Bandier, Chairman and CEO, Sony/ATV Music Publishing. “The depth and breadth of the catalogue is what truly makes it great, and I strongly believe that the addition of the Famous catalogue and its songwriters to Sony/ATV is another step in our long-range growth plans. In addition, we are pleased to be entering the production music business through Famous’ Extreme division. Extreme’s valuable creative team and unique business model will be a terrific complement to our core music publishing business.”

“Famous Music is one of the iconic names in music publishing,” said Philippe Dauman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Viacom. “We are very pleased that Sony/ATV Music Publishing has recognized its great value and potential. We have benefited greatly from the talent and experience of the very able management team at Famous Music, particularly its long time CEO, Irwin Robinson, as well as Ira Jaffe, President and Chief Operating Officer; and Margaret Johnson, Executive Vice President Finance and Administration. We know that Famous and its fine executives have many great days ahead and want to thank them for their tremendous accomplishments.”

“Famous Music is one of the world’s largest independent music publishers, and this acquisition, following on the heels of the Leiber Stoller acquisition, further enhances Sony/ATV’s position in the global music publishing industry,” said Rob Wiesenthal, Chief Financial Officer, Sony Corporation of America.


April 17 /PRNewswire/ —

Sony/ATV (Michael Jackson) Music Publishing today announced that it has acquired the

legendary catalogue of award-winning songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller.

“I am delighted that we were able to acquire the Leiber Stoller

catalogue,” said Michael Jackson. “The songs of Jerry Leiber and Mike

Stoller have defined an era, and the artists who have recorded their work

reads like a who’s who of rock and roll.”

The Leiber Stoller catalogue contains more than 40 Top 40 hits,

including “Stand By Me,” “Poison Ivy,” “Is That All There Is?,” “Love

Potion #9″ and some of the greatest songs that are part of the Elvis

Presley legend, including “Hound Dog” and “Jailhouse Rock.”

Sony/ATV Music Publishing is co- owned by Sony and Michael Jackson.

“I have always been a great fan of this amazing catalogue,” said Martin

N. Bandier, Chairman and CEO, Sony/ATV Music Publishing. “These songs can

only be described as gems that help define American music. I am looking

forward to exploring ways to introduce them to a whole new generation and

to working with Jerry and Mike, who are two of the most prolific and

successful songwriters of all time.”

“This is an important and exciting acquisition for Sony/ATV Music

Publishing,” said Rob Wiesenthal, Chief Financial Officer, Sony Corporation

of America, and Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer, Sony

Entertainment Inc. “This catalogue traces decades of rock and roll history,

and we look forward to further increasing its value for the company going



Leiber and Stoller, who have worked together for more than 50 years,

have been inducted into the Songwriters’ Hall of Fame, the Record

Producers’ Hall of Fame, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. They also

share a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

“As an innovative and independent music publishing company, Sony/ATV

provides the perfect home for our work,” said Mike Stoller. “I am confident

that the team at Sony/ATV will give the necessary focus and attention to

our songs, creating fresh and innovative ways to promote our work.”

Jerry Leiber added, “I am pleased to join Sony/ATV Music Publishing’s

extensive roster of great composers, including Lennon and McCartney, Roy

Orbison, and Hank Williams.”

Key songs from the Leiber and Stoller catalogue include:

Stand By Me, Jailhouse Rock, Hound Dog, Kansas City, Love Potion #9,

Jackson, Is That All There Is?, Lucky Lips, Yakety Yak, Love Me, Santa

Claus Is Back In Town, I’m A Woman, I Keep Forgettin’, Don’t, Spanish

Harlem, Loving You, Searchin’, Poison Ivy, Charlie Brown, Ruby Baby, I (Who

Have Nothing), Trouble, Treat Me Nice, There Goes My Baby, Dance With Me,

Little Egypt, (You’re So Square) Baby I Don’t Care, Young Blood, You’re The

Boss, She’s Not You, Regulate, Saved, Pearl’s A Singer, Smokey Joe’s Café,

Riot In Cell Block # 9, King Creole, Black Denim Trousers and Motorcycle

Boots (L’Homme a la Moto), Bossa Nova Baby, Down Home Girl and Drip Drop.

About Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Sony/ATV Music Publishing was established in 1995 as a joint venture

between Sony and trusts formed by Michael Jackson. Sony/ATV Music

Publishing owns or administers over 400,000 copyrights by such artists as

the Beatles, Beck, Brooks & Dunn, Leonard Cohen, Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan,

The Everly Brothers, Fall Out Boy, Jimi Hendrix, Billy Mann, Joni Mitchell,

Graham Nash, Willie Nelson, Roy Orbison, Richie Sambora, Stephen Stills, KT

Tunstall and Hank Williams, among others.

It is not part of the Sony BMG Music Entertainment venture.

On the web:

SOURCE Sony/ATV Music Publishing: established in 1995
as a joint venture between Sony and Michael Jackson.

What They Don’t Want You to Know About Michael Jackson