Anita Baker is fighting for her master recordings.
Soultress Anita Baker has a successful musical career that has spawned decades. Known for hit songs such as, “Rapture,” and “Sweet Love.” Baker has won eight Grammy awards and five platinum albums. But despite her having massive success she has found herself in quite a bind in regards to her music. A feat that a lot of artists find themselves in. Baker recently, posted on her Twitter account that her fans stop streaming her music. Expressing that she has now “miraculously” outlived her contracts thus fighting for the rights of her masters. Also states that ‘they no longer “own” my name and likeness. Baker says she’s ready to fight for it (masters). As it is supposed to be returned to me.’
The Sad Reality of True Musicianship & Royalties
Master recordings aren’t owned by artists themselves because the labels are fronting the financial bill for recording and marketing their albums. While artists are paid based off record sales. Artists believe that streaming services like Spotify and others rip them off. While in turn pay them pennies on the dollars for their hard work. Songs stream and download with millions of hits while the artists only sees a fraction of what the song has actually made. The Detroit native vents her frustrations in the following tweets below about how the record industry is. According to Essence.com, royalties are paid elsewhere and not directly to the recording artists. The copyright possessions of those albums are what the artists are fighting for.
Baker also breaks down the way artists are to be paid through streaming services. Even referencing the streaming platforms as ‘thieves in the temples.”
What do you think of Baker’s situation? She’s certainly not the only artist that is currently fighting for the rights of their master recordings. Do you think streaming platforms are stealing from the artists? Since the early 2000s streaming has changed the way people buy music. Now it may have changed the way artists are paid as well.