Seven months after Hipgnosis Songs Fund bought 100 percent of Lindsey Buckingham’s publishing rights, the Merck Mercuriadis-led group has acquired the catalog of fellow Fleetwood Mac member Christine McVie.
The deal includes every song McVie penned both with the band and solo, including the Mac hits “Say You Love Me,” “Little Lies,” “Don’t Stop,” “You Make Loving Fun,” “Think About Me,” “Save Me” and many more.
“I am so excited to belong to the Hipgnosis family, and thrilled that you all regard my songs worthy of merit,” McVie said in a statement. “I’d like to thank you all for your faith in me, and I’ll do all I can to continue this new relationship and help in any way I can! Thank you so much!”
Terms of the deal — which includes “Worldwide copyright, ownership and financial interest, including Writer’s Share, of all compositions and Neighboring Rights” for 115 McVie-penned songs — were not revealed.
“Christine McVie is one of the greatest songwriters of all time having guided Fleetwood Mac to almost 150 million albums sold and making them one of the best-selling bands of all time globally,” Mercuriadis said in a statement.
“In the last 46 years the band have had three distinct writers and vocalists but Christine’s importance is amply demonstrated by the fact that eight of the 16 songs on the band’s Greatest Hits albums are from Christine. It’s wonderful for us to welcome Christine to the Hipgnosis Family and particularly wonderful to reunite her once again at Hipgnosis with Lindsey Buckingham. Between Christine and Lindsey we now have 48 of 68 songs on the band’s most successful albums.”
As Hipgnosis notes, following the acquisition of Buckingham and McVie’s catalogs, , they now own the song copyrights and writers share for seven of 11 songs on Fleetwood Mac, eight of 11 songs on Rumours, 15 of 20 songs on Tusk, nine of 12 songs on Mirage, nine of 12 songs on Tango In The Night and 12 of 17 songs on The Dance; the haul also includes 11 of 16 songs on the band’s Greatest Hits collection.
(However, Stevie Nicks sold 80 percent of her publishing rights in 2020 to Hipgnosis rival Primary Wave for around $80 million.)
In recent years, the U.K.-based Hipgnosis Songs Fund has been aggressive in acquiring the publishing rights and catalogs of some of music’s biggest artists, songwriters and producers, including a 50-percent stake in Neil Young’s massive catalog, a 70-percent slice of Mark Ronson’s catalog, a $140 million deal for the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ catalog, the producing royalties of Jimmy Iovine and Bob Rock, the giant, classic rock-stuff Kobalt library and the acquisition of Big Deal Music Group, which housed One Direction, Panic! at the Disco, Shawn Mendes and more.
“I’m not in the publishing business, I’m in the song-management business. There’s a paradigm that I’m a catalyst for changing, paradigms that have existed for decades and people think are OK and normal,” Mercuriadis told Rolling Stone for our Future 25 issue.
“We only buy directly from songwriters because I’m looking to empower songwriters and the songwriter community. The three big recorded-music companies use their leverage of owning the song companies to ensure those companies don’t advocate for songwriters, and they push the economic improvement we’ve seen with streaming so they, not the artist, get the lion’s share of the money at the songwriter’s expense. If nothing else, we’re a catalyst for changing that.”
From Rolling Stone US