Primary Wave acquires music publishing catalog of songwriter and producer Steve Kipner

Primary Wave Music has entered into an agreement to acquire the publishing catalog of Songwriter and Producer Steve Kipner.

Kipner’s music publishing catalog features numerous chart-topping hits that he wrote across his 40+ year career.

Included in the sale are several songs from Olivia Newton-John such as Twist of Fate and Physical.

Additional songs encompass numerous pop hits from platinum-selling artists 98 Degrees (The Hardest Thing), The Script (Breakeven), Natasha Bedingfield (These Words) and others, including Christina Aguilera’s groundbreaking debut single, Genie in a Bottle.

Released in 1999, Genie in a Bottle shot to No.1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart and stayed there for five weeks.

Steve Kipner was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, but raised in Brisbane, Australia. As a teenager he formed Steve & The Board and was signed in 1965 to the same independent Australian label that had signed The Bee Gees and with whom he had early chart successes.

In 1969, Kipner left Australia and followed The Bee Gees to London. They had moved there a few years earlier, after being signed by Robert Stigwood. In the UK, Kipner formed a new band, Tin Tin, which Maurice Gibb brought to Stigwood and whose initial songs Gibb produced.

They had a Top 20 US Billboard and Top 10 UK hit with Toast & Marmalade For Tea.

A year or so later, Kipner moved to Los Angeles and recorded an album there with a group called Friends, writing several songs for their debut album. One of them, Catch Me I’m Falling, ended up being recorded by Engelbert Humperdinck.

This was the first of Kipner’s songs in the 70’s to be performed by another artist. For the next five years, after being signed by Clive Davis to a solo artist record deal, Kipner pursued a career as an artist whilst also supplying hit songs for others.

One of these songs, Physical, was recorded by Olivia Newton John and went on to become a worldwide smash. In the wake of this, with his songs being in great demand, Kipner focused solely on a writing and production career.

Physical was certified Billboard’s biggest song of the 80’s and in 2017 was confirmed to be the eighth biggest Billboard song of all time.

Other credits include The Temptations, Cher, George Benson, Dolly Parton, The Hollies, Joe Cocker, Diana Ross, Neil Diamond & Sheena Easton.

With the success of Doja Cat ft SZA Kiss Me More (UK & US No.3), Kipner has achieved the distinction of having written Top 20 chart hit singles in each of the last seven decades, from the 60’s right up to the present day.

In addition to his achievements above, in 2003, Steve also started his own label, Phonogenic, which was home to artists he signed such as Natasha Bedingfield and The Script and for whom he wrote and produced many major hits.

Such was his success as a label executive that it ultimately led to Sony announcing him as co-Managing Director of Epic Records UK, a position he held from 2011-2014.

Steve Kipner was advised on the sale by Leaf Entertainment Capital.

“I am delighted to be making this deal with Primary Wave.”

Steve Kipner

Steve Kipner said: “I am delighted to be making this deal with Primary Wave.

“I have always had the utmost respect for what Larry and Justin have been building there. Their catalog of writers and songs speaks for itself”.

“We are excited to acquire this incredible catalog of music that Steve has spent a lifetime creating.”

Justin Shukat, Primary Wave Music

Justin Shukat, President & Co-Founding Partner at Primary Wave Music, added: “We are excited to acquire this incredible catalog of music that Steve has spent a lifetime creating.

“Steve’s great catalog has proven that hit songs will continue to be heard for generations to come, Physical by Olivia-Newton John was the biggest song of the 80’s and the evergreen copyright is a hit again this year using that infectious melody in the worldwide smash Kiss Me More by Doja Cat featuring SZA.”

Today’s news three weeks after Primary Wave Music acquired a 50% stake in the master recordings of Grammy-nominated musician, Chris Isaak.

Last month, Primary Wave Music announced that it had finalized what it calls a “strategic relationship” with funds managed by Oaktree Capital Management.

Oaktree Capital has committed to invest up to $375 million into Primary Wave Music in exchange for a minority interest in the music company.

Primary Wave has raised over $800m in the past four years via two IP funds: a $300m fund in 2016, backed by Black Rock, and a further $500m-plus fund launched last year.

Primary Wave also owns substantial interests in the song catalogs of icons such as Ray CharlesBob MarleyWhitney Houston, Burt Bacharach, Smokey Robinson, the Four Seasons, and Fleetwood Mac’s Stevie Nicks.Music Business Worldwide