The investment company made the announcement today, following the news it had bought Jimmy Iovine’s worldwide producer royalties. It had previously held a 25% share of Buckingham’s catalogue, but has now acquired 100% of his music publishing rights. These include his publishing and writer’s share for all of his 161 songs, including a number of classic Fleetwood Mac songs that were written or co-written by Buckingham.
Hipgnosis has also acquired a 50% share of any unreleased compositions by Buckingham.
Speaking about the sale, Buckingham said that he had “wonderful long conversations” with Hipgnosis’ Merck Mercuriadis before arriving at an agreement with the company. “I was pleased to find a kindred spirit, someone who’s a big fan of my work in Fleetwood Mac, and an even bigger fan of my solo efforts,” he said, adding: “I look forward to working with Merck and the whole Hipgnosis team going into the future, and am confident that my body of work will be curated with great heart and insight.”
Mercuriadis added that he views Buckingham as “one of the greatest guitarists, songwriters and producers of all time, yet is still so underrated.”
“His work with Fleetwood Mac has brought the world unparalleled joy over the last 45 years and he belongs in any discussion featuring Brian Wilson and Paul McCartney. It’s wonderful to welcome him and his iconic songs both as a solo artist and with Fleetwood Mac to the Hipgnosis family,” he added.
It’s the latest major move of an artist’s back catalogue, following on from Bob Dylan’s sale of his catalogue to Universal Music Group. This prompted David Crosby to express his own desire to sell his catalogue, in order to make ends meet without traditional revenue streams.
Mercuriadis, alongside producer Nile Rogers, founded Hipgnosis Songs Fund in 2018. Since then its roster has expanded to cover stakes in catalogues of such diverse acts as 50 Cent, Skrillex, The Chainsmokers, and Blondie.
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