Queen to Sell Catalog to Sony Music for More Than  Billion: Report

Queen to Sell Catalog to Sony Music for More Than $1 Billion: Report

You helped bring Queen fame and fortune and everything that goes with it for the past half a century, and now the champions are getting ready for a victory lap.

Sony Music will pay Queen £1 billion (approximately $1.27 billion) for the band’s music catalog and other rights, according to Variety. The magazine reports that the only rights Sony will not retain are those of live performances, as guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor still tour under the band’s name.

The band’s Oscar-winning 2018 biopic, Bohemian Rhapsody, augmented the value of songs like “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “We Will Rock You,” “We Are the Champions,” and “Somebody to Love.” Hits Daily Double, which reported news of the acquisition first, speculated the deal could close within the next couple of weeks.

Disney initially licensed the catalog in 1990 for $10 million, according to Hits. Disney acquired the band’s North American recorded-music rights for an unknown price sometime in the 2000s and would retain them. But any remaining royalties that the musicians still own would now go to Sony. Distribution rights would eventually move from Universal to Sony within the next couple of years depending on the country where the music is sold. Universal will continue to distribute the music in North America, though, since Disney will hold onto those rights.

A rep for Disney did not return Rolling Stone’s request for comment.

In addition to the music rights, Sony will own Queen’s name and likeness, according to Hits. This could mean that Sony could use the group’s songs in a jukebox musical to generate further income. The band’s music could also show up more in advertising.


Forbes reports that if this deal goes through it would be the biggest publicly known sale of a musician’s catalog. Bruce Springsteen sold his publishing catalog to Sony for $500 million in 2021. Bob Dylan sold the rights to his music catalog to Sony the next year for more than $300 million. In February, news broke that Sony wanted to pay $600 million for a stake in Michael Jackson’s catalog. None of these numbers account for unreported sales, though.

Variety reports another bidder backed out of bidding for Queen’s catalog after offers topped $900 million.

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