David Bowie’s Estate Sells The Rights To Bowie’s Entire Catalog

David Bowie's Estate Sells The Rights To Bowie's Entire Catalog

Photo: Everett Collection – Shutterstock

The sales of legendary musical artist’s entire catalogs seems to be becoming a weekly occurrence these days, even for artists who have since passed away. In a mega deal just announced, the entire David Bowie musical catalogue has been sold to Warner Chappell Music for a figure that has not yet been announced. However, sources say that it may be for over two hundred and fifty million dollars. The deal includes the music from every album that David Bowie recorded in his lifetime. David Bowie recorded twenty six studio albums. He also recorded two albums with the band he put together called Tin Machine which is also part of the deal. Tin Machine was a group that was vastly underrated at the time as not all critics accepted the fact that David Bowie had just wanted to be part of a band for a short time in his career. The deal also includes any singles recorded for soundtrack albums or any other compilations.

What the deal does not include is any of the music that David Bowie released pre 1968  that his etsate did not own the rights too. There were a handful of singles and an entire album that David Bowie had released on Deram Records before he was signed to Philips Records for his 1969 debut. The 1967 David Bowie album sounded nothing like the David Bowie we would all come to know. However, many of the songs from 1967 were re-recorded by David Bowie with intentions of an eventual release. That release will soon see the light of the modern day as it will be released shortly under the album title Toy. The Toy album has also been included in the Warner Chappell Music deal.

David Bowie was one of the most loved musical artists of all time. He was also one of the most original artists in classic rock history. His body of work is almost unparalleled among individual artists. Most fans look back at his 1970s releases as the pinnacle of his career. Albums such as Hunky Dory (1971), The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (1972), Aladdin Sane (1973), Pin Ups (1973), Diamond Dogs (1974), Young Americans (1975), Station to Station (1976), Low (1977) and “Heroes” (1977) are all musical treasures. Within those albums David Bowie had also taken on the personas of different characters such as Ziggy Stardust and the Thin White Duke. He wasn’t just a brilliant musician and songwriter, he was a performer who mesmerized audiences in such a groundbreaking way.

Although David Bowie’s 1970s work is seen as some of his most important releases, the man continued to release breathtaking albums throughout his entire six decade career. His 1983 album Let’s Dance that featured Stevie Ray Vaughan on guitar was a huge hit. All throughout the 80s, 90s and 2000s, David Bowie continued to release albums that sounded fresh always reinventing his music while never looking back. His final studio album entitled Blackstar stands as one of his finest works.

David Bowie passed away in 2016 due to his fight with cancer. It’s hard to believe that he has have been gone for five years already. Like so many other deals that have been made by artists such as Bruce Springsteen, ZZ Top, Paul Simon, Neil Young and many others, signing away the rights to their music takes away all the headaches of having to manage an entire catalog of music. It’s probably much easier to just accept a large sum of money and not have to deal with licensing issues and the people in the business. We are seeing such a run on these huge deals right now because eventually the industry is going to run out of classic artists like a David Bowie or a Bob Dylan to purchase their catalogs. Let’s see who’s next?

David Bowie’s Estate Sells The Rights To Bowie’s Entire Catalogue article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2021

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