Bob Dylan sells entire song catalog to Universal Music Publishing in ‘landmark agreement’

By Kate Feldman

New York Daily News

Bob Dylan, the nasally voice of the nation for decades, has signed a blockbuster deal to sell his entire song catalog, spanning more than 600 copyrights and six decades.

Universal Music Publishing announced Monday that it reached a “landmark agreement” with the 79-year-old singer-songwriter for his lifetime of work, “from 1962’s cultural milestone ‘Blowin’ In The Wind’ to this year’s epic ‘Murder Most Foul.’”

“To represent the body of work of one of the greatest songwriters of all time — whose cultural importance can’t be overstated — is both a privilege and a responsibility,” Jody Gerson, the chairman and CEO of Universal Music Publishing Group, said in a statement.

Dylan, born Robert Zimmerman, has long resisted selling his music and has retained most of his own copyrights, including hits like “The Times They Are a-Changin’,” “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” and “Make You Feel My Love.”

The artist started out at folk clubs in Greenwich Village in the early 1960s, then changed the game at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival with an electric set.

Shortly after, he released “Like A Rolling Stone,” a six-minute production initially discarded as too long for the radio before it took off on rock stations, eventually peaking at No. 2, below the Beatles’ “Help.”

In 2016, Dylan won the Nobel Prize for Literature “for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.”

Former President Barack Obama awarded Dylan the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012.

The financial terms of Dylan’s deal have not been disclosed.

Stevie Nicks sold 80% of her extensive catalog last week in what The Wall Street Journal estimated as a $100 million deal. A Los Angeles-based investment firm recently bought Taylor Swift’s early recording catalog for more than $300 million