Primary Wave acquires America, the catalogs of Paul Rodgers

Both are the latest acquisitions by the company

Primary Wave acquired the catalogs of America and Paul Rodgers. The deals, which were among 10 acquired in the last week of 2021, are worth $40 million and $20 million, respectively, according to the Wall Street Journal. They are part of the company’s extensive portfolio which includes Whitney Houston, Bob Marley, Prince and others.

American songs included in the new partnership include a number of the group’s greatest hits written by Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell, such as “Sister Golden Hair”, “Ventura Highway” and “Tin Man”. These three songs would spend weeks in the top 10 of the Billboard 100, with “Sister Golden Hair” reaching the top spot. The band’s iconic hit “A Horse With No Name” is also included. Released in 1971, “A Horse With No Name” was the group’s first and most successful single. The song reached No. 1 on the Billboard 100, staying there for three weeks, and would go on to be certified platinum. In 1972, the single was nominated for a Grammy Award for “Best Pop Vocal Performance by a Duo, Group or Chorus” and helped them win the “Best New Artist” award.

“We’re thrilled that our catalog is now in the capable hands of the good people at Primary Wave, where the music we’ve created over the past 50 years will get new attention and exposure,” says Bunnell. “We are proud of the music we have produced over these decades and look forward to seeing the catalog continue to improve the lives of listeners for generations to come through the vision and actions of Primary Wave. Meanwhile, we actively continue to pursue our careers as songwriters and performers in the 21st century.

Rodgers’ deal includes his music publishing catalog and recorded music revenue streams covering his work with the Free and Bad Company. Songs include “Feel Like Makin’ Love”, “Shooting Star”, “Wishing Well”, “Fire & Water” and “All Right Now”.

The terms of Rodgers’ deal also include a label imprint in partnership with legendary Sun Records which will see the British rocker co-sign artists and curate compilations. Rodgers will also have access to Primary Wave’s marketing, digital, brand and publishing teams for licensing and synchronization opportunities.

“Innovative, hard-working, forward-thinking and courageous are just some of the adjectives that define Primary Wave,” says Rodgers. “Given their in-depth knowledge of my catalog, partnering with them seems a natural progression, to ensure the messages and music endure for fans.”

Primary Wave is expected to ramp up acquisitions in 2022. In 2021, the company closed 29 deals as artists seek to capitalize on their back catalogs as new US tax laws would impose a 5-8% tax increase on gross income adjusted from $10 to $25. million. As streaming and licensing revenue grows, Primary Wave is expected to spend $500-600 million on acquisitions this year alone.