Today, musicFIRST Coalition Executive Director Chris Israel welcomed the introduction of the bipartisan Compensating Legacy Artists for their Songs, Service, and Important Contributions to Society (CLASSICS) Act in the U.S. Senate:
“Songs recorded before 1972 are the very essence of America’s rich musical history. They are an endless source of inspiration for all music creators and provide the literal soundtrack to the lives of generations of fans. Yet because of an inexplicable glitch in copyright law, royalties do not have to be paid for pre-72 recordings, locking some our most beloved artists out of fair compensation while digital, satellite and AM/FM radio stations reap profits from stations dedicated strictly to playing ’oldies.’
“With today’s introduction of the CLASSICS Act in the Senate, a rapidly growing list of music’s champions in Congress are committed to fixing this inequity now so that legacy artists can finally be justly compensated when their songs are played.
“The musicFIRST Coalition applauds Senators John Kennedy (R-La.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) for introducing this important legislation and for working to ensure that music has value, no matter what year it was made in. We also continue to be grateful to the House Judiciary Committee, Chairman Darrell Issa, Ranking Member Jerry Nadler and the many other CLASSICS Act co-sponsors for introducing this bill in the House, shining a light on this once little-known issue and using their platform to tirelessly advocate for music creators.”