musicFirst Uses CC Deal To Make Point About Royalties
July 31, 2008 at 1:45 PM (PT)
The MUSICFIRST Coalition used the closing of the CLEAR CHANNEL sale to release the following statement regarding their attempt to bring a performance rights fee to radio.
"News that CLEAR CHANNEL, the largest radio ownership group, has gone private for $24 billion casts a spotlight on radio’s failure to compensate the artists and musicians who bring music to life and listeners ears to the radio dial, wrote Exec. Dir, DOYLE BARTLETT. "The contrasts could not be more stark -- $24 billion for corporate radio’s ownership, not a penny for America’s artists and musicians. Without music, this deal would be impossible. Without music, CLEAR CHANNEL’s radio empire would just be castles in the sand. Yet corporate radio refuses to discuss a fair performance right for America’s artists and musicians. Recently the head of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF BROADCASTERS said 'I would rather cut my throat than negotiate on this.' For corporate radio negotiating $24 billion deals is ok, but talking to America’s artists and musicians about a fair performance right on radio is just too scary."
The NAB And Clear Channel Respond
No suprise that the NAB's EVP/Media Relations DENNIS WHARTON wasn't impressed. "Free radio airplay of music by CLEAR CHANNEL and thousands of local radio stations has generated untold millions in wealth for the RIAA and recording artists. We continue to question why the RIAA would support a prohibitive tax on the very broadcasters who represent the recording industry's number one promotional platform."
CLEAR CHANNEL EVP/Chief Legal Offiver ANDY LEVIN said, "We provide free advertising and promotion to record labels and artists in the form of thousands of hours of air time each and every day. It is irrational for the record company conglomerates to push for us to pay even more in the form of a performance tax, while at the same time demanding that they be allowed to continue their statutory exemption from paying for the air time they use."