Michael Jackson: What made MJ purchase the Beatles music rights?

In 1985 Michael Jackson had just released his sixth studio album Thriller to critical acclaim. He was quickly rising to fame as an American superstar and wanted to increase his wealth and fame. Jackson decided to buy the copyright for some of his favorite songs after working with Paul McCartney (a member Of The Beatles).

Why was Michael Jackson able to buy The Beatles music rights?

McCartney and Jackson collaborated on Say Say Say Say 1983. McCartney shared with Jackson the wonderful world of song publishing rights during their time together.

Later, the Fab Four member revealed that he had accidentally given Jackson the idea of buying the rights to Jackson’s back catalog from ATV Music 1985.

Jackson continued to be the owner of The Beatles songs through his death in 2009. The tracks were returned to Sony after that.

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McCartney, retelling this story in 2014 on The Graham Norton Show, said: “We lost the early Beatles stuff. It was an act of desperation.

We didn’t have any idea about music management, so we were swindled. “But, what’s the harm?

McCartney spoke about Jackson and said: “Yeah it was strange yeah. He called me over Christmas while I was still working with Michael. He said, “Hi Michael! Do you wish to have some hits?”

McCartney offered advice to McCartney when the two began working together.

Jackson purchased ATV Music in August 1985 for $47 Million.

McCartney spoke later: “It’s not right to do that. To be someone’s friend and then to buy the rug they stand on.”

According to reports, the pop star couple didn’t talk much following the incident.

In 1988, the King of Pop wrote about this experience in Moonwalk.

Jackson wrote: “Paul, and I both learnt the hard way business and the importance publishing and royalties as well as the dignity and art of songwriting.”

McCartney filed a lawsuit in 2016 to get his share of the Lennon/McCartney song catalog from Sony, seven years after Jackson’s passing.

It happened soon after the USA changed copyright laws to permit music authors to claim the rights to music they published prior to 1978.

McCartney eventually reclaimed his rights to the music once and for all.


Publited Sat, 07 August 2021 at 14:32.40 +0000

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