Rockers selling their music catalogs under multi-million dollar deals made headlines in January 2021.
The artists also rampaged on social media throughout the month, offering targeted reactions after the U.S. Capitol riots and warning of scams affecting their fan bases. Elsewhere, on a national TV show, an artist thanked a memorabilia collector for keeping a rhinestone costume from 1972.
You can read our recap for January below.
Artists sell their publishing rights
Neil Young and Lindsey Buckingham sold their music publishing rights in January 2021, joining a growing trend. Songwriters earn royalties for broadcasting and streams, but there is often more money to be made when songs are licensed for commercials, movies, and TV shows. When the publishing rights are sold, the songwriter relinquishes control of the licenses while receiving a large lump sum. Buckingham has ceded its publishing rights to the Hipgnosis Songs Fund. The dollar amount was not disclosed, but Music Business Worldwide said it sold 100% of its rights to 161 songs released solo or with Fleetwood Mac, as well as 50% of previously unreleased material. Young sold 50% of his publishing rights to nearly 1,200 songs to Hipgnosis for an estimated $ 150 million. (Hipgnosis was founded in 2018 by Merck Mercuriadis, who previously directed Guns N ‘Roses, Elton John and Beyonce.) Mick Fleetwood, meanwhile, sold the recorded music rights to his entire music catalog to BMG for a fee of undisclosed dollars. Rolling stone reported that the massive acquisition spanned 300 songs. The list of artists selling publishing rights also includes Def Leppard, Journey, Nikki Sixx, Richie Sambora and Stevie Nicks.
Read more: Lindsey Buckingham sells publishing rights
Rockers Respond to U.S. Capitol Riots
Thousands of supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol in Washington, DC on January 3. 6, and several rock artists then took to social media to share their outrage and disgust. The New York Times reported that more than 100 police officers were injured in clashes with rioters. Paul Stanley of Kiss tweeted: “These are The Terrorists. It is the armed insurrection. The flames were fanned today and over time by the President and some Senators who can not now be allowed to distance themselves or speak out for what they have directly caused. Know their names. This is the result of their deception. Shame. ”Tommy Lee called Trump a“ fucker ”and then tweeted, “you tell the covidiots to come home … it’s a wrap, you are all lost, GTFOH !! And while you’re at it, you Get the hell out of here too before people are seriously injured! “
Read more: Trump supporters storm Capitol Hill: rockers react
Bret Michaels warns fans against scams
Poison singer Bret Michaels posted a video on YouTube warning people after criminals used his name to obtain bank account information from fans. In the video, he said: “It’s amazing how many Bret Michaels impostors come out to my amazing fans, friends and family, and try to rip them off. I’m telling you all during this pandemic – people feel frustrated, isolated and vulnerable – please don’t fall for these bastards. I take this minute to let you know how seriously I take this – that we are going to be working with Dr Phil to help the people who have been the victims of these scumbags. So please everyone be aware. “More scams surfaced later in the year, with thieves preying on Eagles fans and of the Whitesnakes. Scammers often create fake Facebook accounts for groups and target subscribers using fake hashtags. They then send private messages to the fans who interact and request bank account information.
Read more: Bret Michaels warns fans of ‘Scumbags’ scams
Alex Van Halen pays tribute to his late brother
Eddie Van Halen passed away on October 6, 2020, and his brother Alex Van Halen was silent for two days before posting a short post via Van Halen News Desk. The post included a photo of Alex and Eddie as children, posing with a rocking horse, with the note: “Hey Ed. I love you. See you on the other side. Your brother, Al . ” In an interview with Modern drummer, which took place before Eddie’s death, Alex said he had always viewed Van Halen as a live band and was transparent with his struggles in the industry. “There is nothing left in the music business. It’s a bunch of ones and zeros, “he said.” Previously you got a dollar per record, and now you get 50 cents for 275,000 streams. It’s crazy. It’s wrong. Now the only thing you have is playing live, which is ironic because that’s how it all started.
Read more: Alex Van Halen posts first comments since Eddie’s death
A rocking parrot
Tico the Parrot is owned by Floridian Frank Maglio, whose YouTube channel features the bird’s renditions of songs by Led Zeppelin (“Stairway to Heaven”), The Beatles (“Here Comes the Sun”), Van Halen (“Unchained” and “Ain ‘t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love”), Guns N’ Roses (“Patience”) and Bon Jovi (“Wanted Dead or Alive”). Yet, it has been noted, the parrot “does not sing the melody or any of the lyrics, but randomly makes sounds that are more or less in the keys in which Maglio is playing, and has impressive vibrato”.
Read more: Watch a parrot sing along with Led Zeppelin, Van Halen and more
Billy Gibbons finds his costume with rhinestones
Billy Gibbons appeared on an episode of the History Channel reality show Pawn stars and surprised a customer by authenticating the rhinestone suit he wore in the 70s with ZZ Top. Las Vegas Gold & Silver Pawn Shop owner Rick Harrison has said Hollywood brand Nudie’s Rodeo Tailors was the choice of “all rock stars” in the ’70s. Gibbons and Harrison eventually agreed to pay $ 20,000 each. , in the hope of donating the costume to the “Antone’s Blues Museum” in Austin.
Read more: Watch ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons Reunite With Rhinestone Costume
In Memoriam: 2021 deaths
Remember the musicians, actors, producers and others who passed away in 2021.