Sony Buys 50% Of Michael Jackson's Music Catalog For $600 Million

By Thea Felicity

Mar 03, 2024 07:54 AM EST

(Photo : CARL DE SOUZA/AFP via Getty Images)
US popstar Michael Jackson addresses a press conference at the O2 arena in London, on March 5, 2009. Pop megastar Michael Jackson announced Thursday he will play a series of comeback concerts in London in July, his first major shows for over a decade. Four years after his infamous child abuse trial, the 50-year-old eccentric singer confirmed he will play 10 gigs at the giant London O2 arena starting on July 8.

Sony Music Group reportedly paid over $600 million for half of Michael Jackson's music catalog.

This Sony-Michael Jackson deal puts his musical assets at over $1.2 billion, making it the largest deal ever for the work of a solo musician, as first reported by BBC,

The purchase includes iconic hits from albums such as Bad and publishing assets from the Mijac Music catalog, founded by Jackson in 1980. 

Part of Michael Jackson's acquired music catalog also features tracks by other artists under Jackson's Mijac publishing group. This includes hits by Ray Charles, Elvis Presley, and Aretha Franklin and was arranged with the Estate of Michael Jackson, which oversees his affairs. 

However, the Sony-Michael Jackson deal excludes other lucrative ventures like the Broadway musical "MJ", Cirque du Soleil shows, and a biopic featuring Jaafar Jackson. 

The upcoming film biopic featuring Jackson's nephew was expected to increase interest in his music catalog further, thus, why Sony closed the deal as early as possible.

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Not a lot were happy with Sony's acquisition of Michael Jackson's music catalog. BNN Breaking reports that Critics have pointed out Sony's selective approach to ethics, particularly its silence on the allegations against Jackson.

Jackson, who passed away in 2009 at 50, remains one of the most successful pop stars, with disputed sales exceeding 400 million records worldwide. His 1982 album Thriller, remains the best-selling record of all time. 

Although not part of his era, Jackson's popularity extends to streaming platforms, with nearly 40 million monthly listeners on Spotify alone and songs like "Billie Jean" and "Beat It" each exceeding one billion plays. 

Ultimately, the Sony-Michael Jackson deal reflects a trend in the music industry, where artists like Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan have lucratively sold their back catalogs, with Queen reportedly planning a similar deal. 

READ MORE: Sony Sued By PlayStation Players Over Pricey Games

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