These catalog sales stories don’t half tend to come with a bit of fine print.
Earlier today (February 24) Spirit Music Group announced that it has acquired the underlying master rights to the catalog of country superstar, Jason Aldean.
That catalog spans nine albums, and sources tell MBW it cost Spirit just over $100 million.
All of that was, and remains, completely correct.
However, there is an additional piece to this puzzle.
BMG-owned Broken Bow Records has been Jason Aldean’s record label home for nearly two decades.
Following the news about Spirit’s acquisition, BMG has moved to clarify that Broken Bow will be remaining Aldean’s label home until “at least 2030”.
A number of Aldean’s existing albums remain exclusively licensed through BMG / Broken Bow – meaning that although Spirit does now indeed own the underlying copyrights to these recordings, Broken Bow will remain in control of them until these licenses expire.
(Spirit of course, if it wishes, has the option to re-up Aldean’s licensing deal with BMG / Broken Bow when this expiration date is reached.)
In addition, BMG has confirmed that Broken Bow has a deal in place to release Aldean’s next studio album – Georgia – on April 22 this year, and that Broken Bow will also be the star’s label for his following three albums.
BMG Nashville President Jon Loba said in reaction to the Spirit/Aldean story earlier today: “We understand Spirit’s enthusiasm, but they are a little premature.
“We congratulate Jason on his deal and look forward to continuing to work with him exactly as we have for the past 18 years.”
BMG/Broken Bow previously announced a fresh global licensing agreement with Aldean for his recordings in October 2019.
BMG acquired Nashville-based Broken Bow as part of a $103 million buyout in 2017.
“We understand Spirit’s enthusiasm, but they are a little premature. We congratulate Jason on his deal and look forward to continuing to work with him exactly as we have for the past 18 years.”
Jon Loba, Broken Bow
Spirit Music Group is funded by Lyric Capital. In October last year, Lyric struck a $500 million strategic alliance with Northleaf Capital.
Since that deal, Toronto-based Northleaf has used Spirit’s music assets to support the raise of a $303.8 million bond offering.Music Business Worldwide