Bruce Springsteen reportedly just sold his entire song catalog for a whopping $500 Million.
Why do musicians do this? We dug into the Internet to find out.
Let’s take a look!
About the News Story
Multiple news sources, including Rolling Stone and Billboard, reported overnight that Bruce Springsteen sold his entire music catalog to Sony. None of the reports we read could confirm the payout amount with Bruce Springsteen’s team or Sony. However, we’re going to guess that it’s correct.
Springsteen’s catalog contains master recordings for hits such as Born to Run, Thunder Road, and Born in the U.S.A. He recorded all of his songs through Columbia Records, owned by Sony. So this transaction isn’t as much of a surprise as you’d think.
Billboard, who first broke the news, reported that The Boss was asking for only $350 million during initial negotiations with Sony and other companies. At a $500 million final price, we’re sure he’s happy with the results.
About Bruce Springsteen
Bruce Springsteen is a cultural icon and prolific musician. His career spans 50 years, hundreds of songs, and 15 platinum albums. In fact, he’s won 20 Grammys and numerous other awards throughout his life.
However, he never had a song hit #1 on the Hot 100 charts. Dancing in the Dark came close, though, peaking at #2.
Springsteen’s working-class family roots certainly show in his catalog of music. His lyrics talk about the struggles of the working class and their hopes and dreams.
Besides speaking straight to a majority of people in the U.S.A., fans adore him for the extra effort he gives, such as four-hour concerts. And people in the music industry praise him for his excellent work ethic.
What Are Some of Bruce Springsteen’s Most Popular Songs?
If you aren’t sure what Bruce Springsteen sings, we have to ask where you’ve been the past 50 years. Just in case you’ve been on a deserted island all this time, we’ll talk about a few of his top hits.
A Rolling Stone survey of over 15 music experts declared Born to Run as Bruce Springsteen’s greatest song ever. Released on the album of the same name in 1975, it took nearly a year and almost 75 tracks for Springsteen to feel he had it right. His perfectionism paid off as it became the piece that truly launched his career.
In the poll, Badlands and Thunder Road came in second and third, respectively. However, his biggest and most well-known hit is undoubtedly Born in the U.S.A. Seemingly patriotic, in reality, the lyrics talk about a man who got in trouble and was ‘volunteered’ for the military.
Upon returning from the war, he struggles to adjust and find a job. Still, the song hits home for many people in this country whether they find a connection to the soldier or believe it’s simply a patriotic song. Whatever you think it means, we’re sure you agree it’s the most popular tune in Springsteen’s catalog.
Who Else Sold their Music Catalog Recently?
Many famous musicians have sold their music catalogs in recent years. Paul Simon, for example, as well as Stevie Nicks and Bob Dylan.
According to Forbes, Simon’s catalog went for $250 million, and Billboard states Dylan’s sold for somewhere between $375 million and $400 million. As far as we can tell, Springsteen’s deal is the highest paid for a musician’s works.
Why Did Bruce Springsteen Sell His Song Catalog?
Bruce Springsteen hasn’t publicized a specific reason for selling his music. However, we can guess it’s for similar reasons as other musicians.
When you decide to stop playing concerts, you can make more money selling the bulk to a publishing company. Or maybe you’re still playing live but at smaller and fewer venues. Either way, you’re going to get that one-time massive payment. Then you can invest it if you want, buy a retirement castle, or save it for your kids or grandkids.
As much as we don’t want to consider it, most of these musicians are getting up there in age. Think back to some who’ve passed in recent years, such as Prince, Tom Petty, and Aretha Franklin. All saw some serious court battles over their catalogs after they died.
In addition, the streaming boom is creating increased value for music, and companies are vying for the rights to offer great tunes online or as backgrounds for your videos. Add in lower interest rates and potentially higher capital gains taxes in the near future, and you’ve got the perfect situation for musicians to sell.
Is Bruce Springsteen retiring? We can’t say. And we certainly hope he’s got many years left here with us.
An Excellent Reward for Springsteen
The Boss’s music is often about the hard-working people of this country. And he should count himself as one of them. We feel selling his song catalog at $500 million is a well-deserved reward for Bruce Springsteen. What do you think?