Sony sign the largest recording deal in history

The estate of Michael Jackson and Sony Music Entertainment sign the largest recording deal in history, which includes the distribution rights to unreleased material.

Michael Jackson 1984

Following the massive surge in sales of Jackson’s catalogue following his death, Sony Music Entertainment, spearheaded by its Columbia/Epic Label Group division, signed a new deal with the Jackson estate to extend distribution rights to his back catalogue until 2015, which was later extended to 2017, as well as permission to release ten new albums with previously unreleased material and new collections of released work.

The first new album is reportedly due out in November 2010, and the final album before December 2017. The deal was unprecendented in the music industry as it is the most expensive music contract to a single artist in history, with Sony Music reportedly paying $250 million for the deal and with the Jackson estate getting the full sum as well as its share of royalties for all works released.

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