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Shakira and KT Tunstall confirm song catalogue deals

By | Published on Wednesday 13 January 2021


Shakira and KT Tunstall have become the latest artists to sell off stakes in their song catalogues. Although in two very different deals.

In the case of Shakira, she’s gone and done one of those fashionable Hipgnosis Songs Fund deals, selling off 100% of the publishing rights in her 145 song catalogue.

“Being a songwriter is an accomplishment that I consider equal to and perhaps even greater than being a singer and an artist”, she says. “At eight years old – long before I sang – I wrote to make sense of the world. Each song is a reflection of the person I was at the time that I wrote it, but once a song is out in the world, it belongs not only to me but to those who appreciate it as well”.

“I’m humbled that songwriting has given me the privilege of communicating with others, of being a part of something bigger than myself”, she goes on. “I know Hipgnosis will be a great home for my catalogue – and I’m so happy to partner with this company led by Merck [Mercuriadis], who truly values artists and their creations and is an ally to songwriters everywhere who care deeply about the continued life of their songs”.

Mercuriadis adds: “One step at a time, this incredible woman from Colombia has evolved into one of the most famous and influential people in the world. What no one should ever take for granted is that she is one of the most serious and successful songwriters of the last 25 years, having written or co-written virtually every song she has ever recorded”.

“She is a superb creator who has led the charge from what was massive physical success to now having bigger success in streaming than most of her contemporaries”, he goes on. “This is the result of her being a determined force of nature and having written songs the world is incredibly passionate about. It’s wonderful for us to welcome Shakira, the Queen of Latin Music and much more, to the Hipgnosis family”.

I think we probably all need a lie down after all that enthusiasm, but there’s not time, because I still need to tell you about this KT Tunstall deal. This one’s with Primary Wave, which has acquired a stake in the musician’s songs catalogue, and also a 50% share of the artist royalties generated by her recordings.

“I have been a fan of KT from the moment I saw her first showcase at Virgin Records in 2005”, says Primary Wave CEO Larry Mestel. “KT is a rare songwriting talent who writes songs that move you with a story. We are honoured to have her in the family”.

Tunstall adds: “First and foremost, I consider myself a songwriter. It is absolutely re-energising in today’s challenging music landscape to connect creatively with Primary Wave and to discover our mutual joy for the craft of songwriting, and still hold it in greatest of respect”.

As well as repping her songs and banking half of her recording royalties, Primary Wave will also market Tunstall’s name and likeness.