November 29, 2021

IP Goes Pop! Season 2 Episode #3: Taking Back the Music

This week on IP Goes Pop! fellow Volpe Koenig Shareholder Robert Leonard joins Michael Snyder to talk about artists’ rights and attempts by musicians to regain rights to their original recordings.

This episode begins with a brief overview of the “bundle of rights” that copyright owners hold. From there the discussion turns to “master” recordings. Master recordings are the music recordings that serve as the basis for the marketable form of music whether that be vinyl, CDs, mp3s or streaming platforms. When musicians sign record contracts with recording studios they typically sign over the copyrights to their master recordings often without a full understanding of the value of these rights.

From Taylor Swift to Prince, IP Goes Pop! looks at what’s at stake when giving up rights to master recordings. In this episode, Michael and Rob explore how musicians try to “take back the music” and discuss how different artists navigated disputes over their intellectual property.

Is it fair for record companies to take copyrights from artists in exchange for distributing their music? Is there anything that disgruntled artists can do to regain the rights to their music? Listen as Michael and Rob discuss the disparate bargaining power of the parties and some strategies artists have utilized to regain the rights to their music. Learn how the internet coupled with the likes of TikTok may be turning the industry on its flip-side.

In this Episode:

  • What does it mean to own your own music?
  • Taylor Swift and Scooter Braun Music Ownership “Feud”
  • Relationship between Copyright and Contract Law
  • Social Media Influence
  • Prince’s Strategies to Gain Back Ownership of His Music
  • Tom Petty’s Fight to Hold Down Record Prices
  • Lessons for Creators
  • Michael Jackson buying the Beatles Music Catalog

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