Downtown Music the independent rights-management and music-services companies has left the copyright business.
Downtown sold a library of owned copyrights of hit songs recorded by artists including Adele, Aretha Franklin, and Lady Gaga for $400 million. The company is redirecting their efforts to artist services (distributing, marketing, licensing, royalty collection)
Independent artists make up the fastest growing sector of the music biz. Why? Because the digital streaming platforms like Spotify and Apple made signing with a major label nearly obsolete. While the major label system still rolls out the occasional radio hit, the artists who distribute music without any major music label has morphed into a billion-dollar market.
Artists want nearly full control of their music and rarely want to give up their rights. That’s problematic for the major labels that generally demand artists sell their rights in return for distribution and promotion.
“The motivation to sell your rights at the onset of your career is falling out of fashion,” said Downtown founder and Chief Executive Justin Kalifowitz. “While it is true the top of the pyramid, the top 1% of creators, are selling their copyrights, the general theme of the music business today is ‘how do I own and control my music?'”