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November 10, 2016IM -
According to Billboard, there’s a bidding war between three major labels to acquire the bounty of unreleased music contained within Prince’s Paisley Park vault. The former member of Local 30-73 (St. Paul-Minneapolis, MN) member was known for advocating for the rights of musicians against the often exploitative practices of those in the music industry.
Estate advisers Charles Koppelman and L. Londell McMillan are shopping the musical holdings for $35 million, Billboard‘s source says. Apparently, Sony, Warner Bros., and Universal have all submitted offers, although each declined to comment.
The vault in the Paisley Park basement—reportedly with time lock and large spinning combination handles, which only Prince knew how to open—contains thousands of hours of unheard live and studio material. Prince would spend days recording the projects that were more likely to end up in a pile on the floor than released on record, Paisley Park employees say. The full collection has yet to be catalogued
Ownership is also an item of contention. The recordings were made by Prince and reside in Prince’s vault, but Prince himself was under a much-maligned contract with Warner Bros. from 1977 to the 1990s and after that, he signed to a series of short-term and one-off deals with Universal, Sony, Epic, and others who, ostensibly could swoop in to lay claim.