Major Labels Trying to Stop Artists from Re-Recording Songs


Steve Knopper, writing for Billboard:

The major labels, Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group, have recently overhauled contracts for new signees, according to top music attorneys, some demanding artists wait an unprecedented 10, 15 or even 30 years to re-record releases after departing their record companies. “The first time I saw it, I tried to get rid of it entirely,” says Josh Karp, a veteran attorney, who has viewed the new restrictions in UMG contracts. “I was just like, ‘What is this? This is strange. Why would we agree to further restrictions than we’ve agreed to in the past with the same label?’”


Adds Dina LaPolt, a music attorney with a long history of grappling with labels over contracts: “Now, because of all this Taylor Swift stuff, we have an even new negotiation. It’s awful. We’re seeing a lot of ‘perpetuity.’ When we were negotiating deals with lawyers, before we would get the proposal, we’d get the phone call from the head of business affairs. We literally would say, ‘If you send that to me, it will be on Twitter in 10 minutes.’ It never showed up.”