On Monday, London-based management company Hipgnosis Songs Fund and RZA announced that Hipgnosis has acquired the publishing rights to half of his musical catalog. The British company was co-founded by Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Nile Rodgers.
“I wear various hats in my artistic expressions,” RZA said in a statement. “But the one that has been so deeply reflective of my life’s journey is my songwriting. I’m honored to partner up with Merck [Mercuriadis] and the Hipgnosis team to usher my songs into an exciting future.”
Hipgnosis Songs Fund also manages playlists, covers, interpolations, and synchronization revenues of its intellectual properties. Over the years, Hipgnosis co-founder Merck Mercuriadis has managed acts like Beyonce, Nile Rodgers, Elton John, Iron Maiden, and Morrissey. Rodgers and Mercuriadis formed the company to prioritize songwriters in musical revenue. Recently, the company bought the catalog of legendary producer Timbaland. In just a year, the company has spent $700 million on 42 artists’ catalogs.
“RZA and the Wu-Tang Clan did not invent hip-hop,” Mercuriadis said. “But they took it from something fun to something that represented a true reflection of what the streets, and being Black in America was really like. They were and are the most authentic band and brand in hip-hop and it all starts with RZA’s vision, his songs and his struggle, manifested in music…he is now globally recognized as a true renaissance man of hip-hop and most would argue that he is the G.O.A.T.”
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