Dylan Sells 60 Years of Recordings

Sony's Columbia Records, which signed the artist in 1961, will control the catalog
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 24, 2022 7:30 PM CST
Dylan Sells 60 Years of Recordings
This box set cover image released by Columbia Records shows "Bob Dylan: The Best of the Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series Vol. 12."   (Columbia Records via AP)

Bob Dylan has sold all of his recordings, though they're not really going anywhere. Sony Music Group's Columbia Records is the new owner, Dylan announced Monday. Columbia "has been nothing but good to me for many, many years and a whole lot of records," his statement said. "I'm glad that all my recordings can stay where they belong." Financial terms weren't announced, but Variety reports the price was between $150 million and $200 million. The deal was signed in July but not announced until now.

The sale includes Dylan's 39 studio albums, the 16 "Bootleg Series" outtakes and live recordings, and various singles, per Billboard. He'd already sold the rights to his lyrics and compositions to Universal Music Group. With Dylan's recordings producing $16 million a year worldwide, the catalog would be worth at least $200 million, Billboard estimates. Dylan, 80, released his first album and signed with Columbia in 1961. Dylan and Columbia also just extended their contract.

Unreleased material is part of the deal, and Sony's boss said the company is "excited to work with Bob and his team to find new ways to make his music available to his many fans today and to future generations." Sony cut a deal last month with Bruce Springsteen for his recording and publishing catalogs. Not only are Dylan and Springsteen two pillars of Columbia, per Billboard, their recordings are generating similar amounts of revenue. Famed executive John Hammond signed both of them. When Dylan performs, he's introduced as "Columbia recording artist Bob Dylan."
. (More Bob Dylan stories.)

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