CMU School of Drama

Friday, July 07, 2017

Paul McCartney Finally Regains Beatles Rights After Near 50-Year-Long Battle This year has been a big one for Sir Paul McCartney. On June 18th, the former member of The Beatles turned 75. A few days prior to his birthday, McCartney’s rank for knighthood was elevated after twenty years to Companion of Honour for his services to music. Over the weekend, McCartney had yet another success to celebrate — after a long battle dating back decades, the prolific songwriter finally regained the copyright to the Beatles catalog in a private settlement with Sony ATV.

1 comment:

Sidney Rubinowicz said...

One of the most impactful music groups of the 20th century are Liverpool’s The Beatles. It seems almost natural that such talented musicians would have claim to the music they wrote themselves. However, this article showcases how difficult it can be when big industries get involved. Copyright laws of the publishing company, in this case ATV music, can blur the line of who actually owns the music. Luckily the U.S. Copyright Act of 1967 allows musicians to hold more ownership over their compositions. Because Paul McCartney was dealing with the British court, this law didn’t provide him much support. Live for Live Music, the publisher of this article, adequately discusses how this argument grew into a half a century long battle. I like how the piece chose to state the facts of the process, without infiltrating much bias about how the music industry functions. I was also initially attracted to this piece because of my love and appreciation for The Beatles and their footprint in music history.