Back in September it appeared that Warner Music Group (WMG) was negotiating a catalog deal with David Bowie’s estate, however it appears that asset holders are still negotiating terms of the sale. According to Music Business Worldwide, the estate is in the “advanced stages” of negotiating the sale of Bowie’s songwriting catalog, which reportedly attracted bids of $200 million.
Several of Bowie’s iconic records such as The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, Let’s Dance, Heroes, Hunky Dory and Aladdin Sane are all reportedly part of a possible sale, which is occurring during a time of massive songwriting catalog acquisitions.
WMG alone acquired the 12Tone music catalog, which featured a diverse array of work by performers such as alternative R&B star Anderson .Paak and country icon Dolly Parton. Other major labels such as Universal Music Group have followed suit by purchasing the catalog of classic rock outfit Aerosmith.
Labels aren’t the only ones to get in on these songwriting catalogs either, the Hipgnosis Songs Fund began merely three years ago, however they have already acquired the extensive catalogs of California rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers, Latin pop star Shakira, Fleetwod Mac’s Lindsey Buckingham and prominent music executive Jimmy Iovine.
Not all of these acquisitions have been peaceful however, Bob Dylan’s estimated $300 million sale resulted in a lawsuit from the wife of a former songwriting collaborator. The deal reportedly included over 600 of Dylan’s songs, including tracks that were co-written and The Band’s “The Weight,” which he owned but did not co-write.