Those whose familiarity with the music industry only extends to changing radio stations to find a song you like might be surprised to learn just what a major financial powerhouse the music industry really is. The music industry brings in about $23 billion annually. Who works in music? Chances are you can name half a dozen positions—including musicians, agents and roadies. In reality, there are about two dozen different well-paid professions associated solely with the music business. One of the most important things to know is that previously recorded songs are still huge moneymakers. The rights to rerecord, advertise with and perform songs by recording artists are pure gold. One of the men who established today’s template for the sale of music catalogs is a guitar-playing California native.
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The Negotiation That Taught the Negotiator
The man who is easily the best know attorney in the music royalty business is John Branca Harvard presenter. Branca represents an astonishing number of noteworthy recording artists —30 of his clients are already members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Before Branca became the respected financial negotiator he is today, he had to learn to expect the unexpected when dealing with recording artists. He discusses this in his well-known presentation at the Harvard Law School. In his talk, he mentions his humorous first experience of working with the Beach Boys.
The Deal That Reset the Music Industry
The single achievement for which Branca is best known is helping Michael Jackson purchase the rights to the Beatles catalog. The arduous negotiations turned Jackson into music’s single largest publisher. When Michael Jackson died, Branca stepped in as co-executor of his will and brought solvency to his estate. A great many recording artists credit him with securing their financial futures through the royalty work he has done on their behalf.
The Attorney Who Makes It All Happen
Who exactly is this individual who has made a name for himself while making multiple millions for his clients? Long before the John Branca Harvard presentation, he was known as the southern California boy who grew up playing music and loving baseball. A chance reading of an interview with Elton John caused Branca to realize recording artists needed to be represented by attorneys.
In addition to his work undergirding the fortunes of the world’s rock musicians, Branca is also a well-known, highly regarded philanthropist.