BMG will represent Jean-Michel Jarre’s entire music publishing catalog in what’s said to be the biggest single deal ever struck by the music company in France.
BMG said Thursday that it is acquiring the electronic music pioneer’s decades-deep works, an arrangement that brings in such classic albums as Oxygene and Equinoxe, together with Jarre’s writer’s income stream.
BMG previously acquired the sound recordings of Jarre’s first three albums when it bought independent record label Francis Dreyfus Music in 2012.
Jarre, 73, is a giant in his field.
Born in Lyon, France, the electronic music composer has 21 albums to his name, several of them stone-cold classics, including his 1976 album Oxygene, its followup Equinoxe, 1981’s Magnetic Fields and 1984’s Zoolook.
Career album sales top 85 million units, and, across his career Jarre has set creative and cultural benchmarks.
In 1981, he was the first Western musician to perform in China, landmark shows captured for the double album The Concerts In China. He was invited again, which he accepted in 2004, whereupon he played the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square, concerts which beamed out live on national television.
Jarre’s ambitious concerts are the stuff of legend, events in which downtown skyscrapers and landmarks become props, and the city his stage.
Last year, President Emmanuel Macron awarded him the Commander of the Légion d’Honneur, France’s highest order of merit. Earlier, he released the album Amazonia, a musical tribute to the Amazon rain forest, its inhabitants, and the threats they face, and the companion to an exhibition by legendary photographer Sebastião Salgado.
“Jean-Michel Jarre is not only a ground-breaking pioneer in electronic music, he is a polymath and a shining ambassador for culture and internationalism,” comments BMG CEO Hartwig Masuch. “Nearly fifty years after Oxygene burst upon the world, we are delighted to build on our longstanding relationship to become custodians of his music publishing rights.”
A long-standing advocator for creators’ rights, Jarre served as president of CISAC from 2013-2020, has served as spokesman for international labels body IFPI and he currently chairs the Council for Strategy and Innovation at French authors’ society SACEM.
“This partnership with BMG means a lot to me,” Jarre says of his new agreement with the Germany-based independent music company. Masuch and the entire team “have been part of my family for many years. Moreover, I am pleased that my publishing back catalog is sheltered here in Europe and that my work will continue to grow in such good hands. Today is a new start allowing me to develop fresh ideas and giving me the means to explore new territories. Together we will thrive.”
Catalogue Associates Limited brokered the deal for Jarre, while Maximilien Jazani Esq assisted and advised according to a statement from BMG.