Bob Dylan’s share of the Traveling Wilburys has been acquired by Primary Wave Music — an asset that most people probably did not realize was not included in the Nobel Prize-winning artist’s nine-figure deals with Universal Music Publishing and Sony Music.
Dylan’s master royalties and neighboring rights royalties for both of the group’s albums, as well as a 2007 box set, are included in the deal. Terms were not disclosed.
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The Wilburys were a supergroup comprised of Dylan, George Harrison, Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne and Roy Orbison, and released two albums filled with lighthearted, not-too-serious songs in contrast to their usually weighty work. Orbison died of a heart attack just weeks after the first album was released in 1988, but the four continued as a quartet for a second album, jokingly titled “Vol. 3.” Powered by songs like “Handle With Care,” “End of the Line” and “She’s My Baby,” the albums were a surprise pop hit, with the first one winning a Grammy and being certified triple platinum and both reaching top 5 in several countries — No. 3 and 11 in the U.S., respectively. Harrison and Lynne re-teamed in 1995, when the latter produced two John Lennon demos with the surviving Beatles for their “Anthology” collections. A boxed set containing several previously unreleased songs and a DVD was issued in 2007.
Primary Wave Music’s VP of business & legal affairs Samantha Rhulen said, “To acquire even a small portion of Bob Dylan’s work as part of Traveling Wilburys is exciting, to say the least. We’re honored to add this bit of history to our growing music catalog.”
According to the announcement, Primary Wave “will look to further the legacy of these iconic musicians and these celebrated and legendary albums using their internal infrastructure that includes marketing, digital strategy, licensing, and synch opportunities.”
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