Universal Music Group’s publishing arm has bought Bob Dylan’s entire back catalogue of more than 600 songs, from towering classics such as 1965’s “Like a Rolling Stone” to this year’s 17-minute epic “Murder Most Foul”.
The price was not disclosed, but is estimated at more than $300 million.
“The deal is the most significant music publishing agreement this century and one of the most important of all time,” UMG said in a press release.
UMG declined to say how much the deal was worth but it was likely to have swelled the coffers of the man who once wrote “money doesn’t talk, it swears” by many millions of dollars. The Financial Times said it could be in nine figures.
A Universal spokesperson told Reuters: “Can’t discuss specific deal terms but essentially rights were with him.” Dylan, who emerged from the Greenwich Village folk scene in the early 1960s to become arguably the most acclaimed and influential artist of the rock era, is still going strong at the age of 79.
The copyrights for songs spanning his 60-year career include such anthems as “Blowin’ In The Wind”, “The Times They Are A-Changin” and “Tangled Up In Blue,” as well as “Make You Feel My Love”, which was huge hit for Adele, and “Things Have Changed”, for which he won an Oscar.