Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Bob Dylan sells entire catalog to Universal Music, possibly for up to $300 million

Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan
Photo: Frazer Harrison (Getty Images)

The Holidays are going to be awesome at the Dylan household this year, with lil’ Jakob and his siblings hopefully getting enough PlayStation 5 systems that they don’t even need to share, since their dad just came into a pretty massive windfall: As reported by Deadline, Bob Dylan just sold off his entire music catalog to Universal Music Publishing Group, with some saying the deal was valued at $300 million. The specific terms of the deal haven’t been announced, but it covers more than 600 songs—from the famous good ones to the famous bad ones—and is probably all about securing control of Dylan’s music for streaming concerns. The Deadline story points out that “song rights for establishing artists have risen in value,” since so many people exclusively listen to music on streaming, and Universal Music can now just file away the Dylan rights and rest easy knowing that they’ll be a reliable source of income until the end of time (or whatever, we don’t know how this deal works).

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The streaming angle is also very clearly the subtext in a pair of statements released by UMPG executives Jody Gerson and Lucian Grainge, both of whom shared some variation on “future generations will be able to hear Dylan’s music and that is good.” That is good! And hey, if Bob Dylan would prefer to have $300 million and leave UMPG to worry about what happens with his songs, then he’s earned that right. The man did begrudgingly accept a Nobel Prize, after all. Now he can just sit back and appreciate his many new PlayStations.