Music Modernization Act passes Senate

The act updates the royalty rate for the streaming era

SiriusXM, Azoff Music Management, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA) have announced an agreement on the Music Modernization Act which has passed the Senate. The changes build upon existing language to confirm in law that artists will receive fifty percent of performance royalties from SiriusXM for pre-1972 sound recordings, and confirm that the existing sound recording royalty rate for satellite radio will remain in place unchanged until 2027, an additional five year period.

“We are pleased to join with the music community in sponsoring amendments that protect artists in this legislation. It is important that the music industry move forward so that artists can showcase their work throughout the United States,” Liberty Media’s President and CEO Greg Maffei states in a press release.

“SiriusXM is a platform that respects and actively supports artists and all music creators, and we are delighted to have reached this agreement to help pass this bill,” adds Jim Meyer, Chief Executive Officer of SiriusXM.

“This is a monumental occasion for artists and songwriters who are now assured – in law – that they will receive their deserved royalties,” claims Irving Azoff, founder, Azoff Music Management. “We are proud to be a part of this critical consensus and the ongoing fight for artists’ rights.”

“We are pleased that SiriusXM and the music community have come to an agreement that ensures the protection of artists, songwriters, publishers, labels, producers, and all music creators who will benefit from this long-sought, consensus legislation,” states RIAA’s President Mitch Glazier.

“On behalf of the publishing community, we are grateful to have reached this agreement which finally puts another objection to this groundbreaking bill to rest, and are united around a key goal of protecting all those in the music ecosystem,” says David Israelite, NMPA President and CEO.

The Music Modernization Act, S. 2823, including the CLASSICS Act, updates music licensing laws for the streaming era. Now that it’s passed the Senate, it moves onto the House of Representatives where it’s expected to be signed and then onto President Donald Trump’s office. If passed, it’ll be effective beginning January 1, 2021.

Last week, the artist-run Content Creators Coalition (c3) launched a mobile billboard tour aimed at Maffei’s stand on refusing to pay elderly artists when the sat rad plays their songs for profit. Liberty Media owns seventy-one percent of SiriusXM, which the billboard stated: “You can’t be Sirius.”

Author: Buddy Iahn

Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.