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Macca: Get Back My Songs 1/20/2017
Ramp / Hollywood Reporter
Paul McCartney is looking into a declaratory judgment that states he will soon regain his copyright ownership share to a treasured catalog of songs he created as a member of The Beatles. In what The Hollywood Reporter says could become "one of the most important legal battles in the music industry this decade," McCartney is looking to leverage the termination provisions of the Copyright Act. According to McCartney´s complaint, he transferred rights to songs co-authored by him and John Lennon between 1962 and 1971 to various music publishers.

You may recall that in the 1980s, after getting advice from McCartney himself that the big money in music was tied to publishing, Michael Jackson bought a bunch of Beatles songs, including "Yesterday," "Hey Jude" and "Let It Be." Jackson later entered into a joint venture with Sony/ATV, and last year, Jackson´s estate sold his remaining interest to Sony. The suit notes that McCartney has been serving and recording termination notices for nearly a decade. Represented by attorneys at Morrison & Foerster, McCartney now expects to recover his copyright interests as soon as Oct. 5, 2018... However…

The complaint further states, "For years following service of the first Termination Notices, Defendants gave no indication to Paul McCartney that they contested the efficacy of Paul McCartney´s Termination Notices. Defendants´ affiliates did, however, oppose at least one other artist´s terminations of transfers under the terms of the 1976 Copyright Act." That artist is Duran Duran.

In response to McCartney´s preemptive suit, Sony issued this statement: "Sony/ATV has the highest respect for Sir Paul McCartney with whom we have enjoyed a long and mutually rewarding relationship with respect to the treasured Lennon & McCartney song catalog. We have collaborated closely with both Sir Paul and the late John Lennon´s Estate for decades to protect, preserve and promote the catalog´s long-term value. We are disappointed that they have filed this lawsuit which we believe is both unnecessary and premature." The full complaint is posted on the Hollywood Reporter website.

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