With a pact now with Fearless Records, Clear Channel Media and Entertainment continues its slow but steady signing of independent label deals in which the broadcaster agrees to pay artist performance royalties from terrestrial radio in exchange for predictable royalties rates for webcasting.
Fearless music’s roster includes Plain White T’s, At the Drive-In and The Aquabats!, Breathe Carolina, Mayday Parade, Eve 6, Piece The Veil, and The Summer Set who will now receive performance royalties when their songs are played on any of Clear Channel's 850 radio stations.
Since last June, when it cut its first deal with Big Machine, Clear Channel has signed similar deals with Glassnote Entertainment Group, DashGo, rpm Entertainment, E1 Entertainment, Robbins Entertainment, Naxos and Wind-up Records.
The deals benefit labels and artist by paying performance royalties from a pool of 1% of the stations advertising from terrestrial broadcasts, something the music industry has long sought but up until the Big Machine deal, has never been able to obtain. In return, Clear Channel, sources say, gets a predictable model that pays performance royalties from 2% of advertising revenues from webcasting, instead of the per-play, per listener rates that are set by the CRB board, which makes it difficult for the company to predict costs.
“These market-based partnerships with record labels are part of Clear Channel’s efforts to help build a sustainable business model for Internet radio,” Clear Channel CEO Bob Pittman said in a statement. “We want to make sure that our fans can listen to the music they want whenever and wherever they want it. Fearless has helped launch the careers of a number of successful artists and we are excited to partner with them to continue to help listeners discover new music through the power of radio, whether on-air or online.”
While Fearless has helped numerous artist build careers, without radio "none of it would have been possible," Fearless Records president Bob Becker said in a statement. “Radio is where we introduced these successful artists to their fans and where fans go to discover new music from the bands they love, and we look forward to breaking more rock artists with the help of Clear Channel, on both broadcast radio and digitally, in the future.”