The times are a-changin': As veteran labels scramble to adapt to the evolving music industry and tap other sources of financial gain to recoup lost revenues, U2 have opted to sign a 12-year contract with Live Nation, which will now handle the band's merchandising, digital, and branding rights, as well as touring management. The concert promoter/venue management firm does not get the band's recording contract, though: Bono and crew will continue recording for longtime label home, Universal Music Group. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
"It's not a do or die situation that we have to be involved in the recordings," Live Nation Chairman Michael Cohl said in an interview with Reuters. "We'd prefer to, but it's not always available."
Madonna recently signed an all-encompassing deal with Live Nation, which, unlike U2, also includes her recording rights, a three-album commitment, and is estimated to be worth $120 million over 10 years. [Via Bilboard.com]