Roc Nation and Tidal Bosses Challenge Prince Copyright Lawsuit
by Mike Winslow
(AllHipHop News) The “Purple Rain” superstar died in April, and to honor his legacy on what would have been his 58th birthday in June, all of his old albums were made available for Tidal users to stream.
However, bosses at Prince’s NPG Records label and NPG Music Publishing objected to the move, insisting the tragic hitmaker had only allowed Tidal chiefs to share his final album, Hit n Run Phase One, for 90 days upon its release in 2015.
Together with estate administrators at Bremer Trust, they filed a federal suit in November, accusing Tidal and Roc Nation bosses of “exploiting many copyrighted Prince works in addition to the works that comprise the Hit n Run Phase One album.”
They also revealed that they had recruited Universal Music Group experts to help negotiate streaming rights with other services in time for the 2017 Grammy Awards, when Recording Academy chiefs are preparing to celebrate the singer’s musical contributions.
Executives behind Roc Nation and Tidal have now challenged the claims in their own court filings, insisting the plaintiffs do not have the authority to shop Prince’s work to their competitors and are thereby committing copyright misuse in their actions.
Meanwhile, bosses at Bremer Trust have secured a new deal regarding branding rights, which they have granted to Bravado, the merchandise and brand management firm owned by Universal Music Group.
The contract tasks Bravado officials with managing retail and licensing projects and “strategically curating global programs that embrace and honor Prince’s legacy, embody his invaluable influence on art and culture and provide exciting new connections for his millions and millions of fans.”