NEW YORK (AP) — Bob Dylan’s entire catalog of songs, which reaches back 60 years is being acquired by Universal Music Publishing Group.
The catalog contains 600 song copyrights including “Blowin’ In The Wind,” “The Times They Are a-Changin’,” “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door,” and “Tangled Up In Blue.” The influence of Dylan’s body of work may only be matched by that of the Beatles.
Financial terms were not disclosed Monday, but the catalog may be the most prized in the music industry. Four years ago, when Michael Jackson’s estate sold the remaining half-share that it owned in the artist’s catalog, it fetched $750 million.
“Brilliant and moving, inspiring and beautiful, insightful and provocative, his songs are timeless—whether they were written more than half a century ago or yesterday,” said Sir Lucian Grainge, CEO of Universal Music Group, in a prepared statement.
Dylan’s songs have been recorded more than 6,000 times, by various artists from dozens of countries, cultures and music genres, including the Jimi Hendrix version of “All Along The Watchtower.”
The transaction’s announcement comes a few weeks after the singer-songwriter’s musings about anti-Semitism and unpublished song lyrics sold at auction for a total of $495,000.
Dylan, first entered the public consciousness with New York City’s Greenwich Village folk scene during the early 1960s. When he brought an electric guitar on stage in 1965, he split the music community in what was considered a radical departure for an artist.
Dylan then produced three albums back to back in just over a year that are changed the course of rock ‘n’ roll that decade, starting with “Bringing It All Back Home.”
Dylan has sold more than 125 million records globally. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2016, the first songwriter to receive such a distinction.
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