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Publishing Briefs: Tate McRae Signs With Sony/ATV, Reservoir Gives ‘Lady Marmalade’ Co-Writer a Go

A rundown of the latest moves in publishing, including Tate McRae's Sony/ATV signing and Reservoir's acquisition of Bob Crewe's hefty songwriting catalog.

Sony/ATV has signed breakthrough singer-songwriter-dancer Tate McRae to a global publishing deal.

McRae, who recently hit No. 5 on Billboard’s Emerging Artists chart on the strength of her streaming hit “You Broke Me First,” released her debut EP, All the Things I Never Said, in January. Other recent releases include “Vicious” feat. Lil Mosey, “Don’t Be Said” and “Lie To Me” feat. Ali Gatie.

Boasting over 2.8 million subscribers on YouTube, McRae was recently named to Billboard’s 21 Under 21 Ones To Watch as well as Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list. She recently performed on Jimmy Kimmel Live and at the 2020 MTV EMAs, in addition to receiving an MTV Video Music Award nomination for Best New Artist this year.

“Watching Tate grow has been amazing – she has propelled her career in the midst of a global pandemic, all while finishing high school,” said Sony/ATV creative managers Mya Hansen and Danielle Middleton in a joint statement. “We have no doubt that she is on her way to becoming a global superstar, and we are thrilled to be a part of her journey as a songwriter and artist.”

Reservoir has acquired the catalog of late Songwriters Hall of Famer Bob Crewe, which includes such popular Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons singles as “My Eyes Adored You,” “Walk Like A Man” and “Big Girls Don’t Cry” and hit songs by LaBelle (“Lady Marmalade,” later performed by Christina Aguilera, Lil’ Kim, Mya and P!nk) and The Rays (“Silhouettes”).

Crewe, who launched his songwriting career in the 1950s, released a pair of solo albums before teaming with songwriter Bob Gaudio in 1962. The duo went on to write a number of chart-topping songs for The Four Seasons, which also included hits such as “Sherry” and “Rag Doll.”

Also in Crewe’s songwriting catalog are Lesley Gore’s “Summer and Sandy,” Vikki Carr’s “Eternity,” Ben E. King’s “I Can’t Take It Like A Man” and Roberta Flack and Peabo Bryson’s “You’re Looking Like Love To Me.” His songs have since been covered by a number of popular artists and featured in film, TV and Broadway productions.

Downtown Music Publishing has acquired the catalog of songwriter Chris Braide, best known for his work with Sia.

Braide’s Sia co-writes include “Big Girls Cry,” “Helium,” “Flames,” “Unstoppable,” “She Wolf (Falling to Pieces),” “Eye of the Needle,” “Freeze You Out,” “Confetti” and “Space Between.” He has additionally written on songs performed by Beyoncé (“God Made You Beautiful”), Britney Spears (“Perfume”), Christina Aguilera (“Blank Page”), Lana Del Rey (“Million Dollar Man”), Selena Gomez (“Camouflage”) and Halsey (“Trouble”), among others. As a solo artist, he has released a total of five studio albums.

Braide began working with Sia right around the time of her Billboard 200 No. 1 album 1000 Forms of Fear, and the relationship has continued into the present day with his work on the soundtrack to her upcoming feature film Music.

Negotiations for the deal were led by Downtown’s parent company, Downtown Music Holdings, and managed by senior vp of global business development Bruce Lampcov. Braide was represented in the negotiations by entertainment lawyer Brian Schall of Wolf, Rifkin, Shapiro, Schulman & Rabkin.

Reach Music Publishing has acquired the full publisher and writer shares, including global administration rights, of producer Keith Shocklee’s catalog. The acquisition includes 40 songs performed by Public Enemy, Ice Cube, LL Cool J, 3rd Bass, Prophets Of Rage and The Prodigy.

Shocklee, a founding member of production team The Bomb Squad alongside Chuck D, Eric Sadler and Hank Shocklee, previously had a longstanding co-publishing deal in place with Reach Music.

The most iconic song in Shocklee’s catalog, Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power,” was featured in Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing and was later included on Public Enemy’s 1990 album Fear of a Black Planet. The catalog additionally features his contributions to Ice Cube’s platinum-selling debut solo album AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted.

Songtrust has signed a new agreement with Secretly Publishing that will see the royalty collection platform administering Secretly’s full music catalog — including the catalogs of affiliates Ghostly Songs and The Songs of Numero Group — for royalty collections outside the U.S. and Canada.

The Secretly catalog consists of over 20,000 musical works from artists including The War on Drugs, Beirut and Grizzly Bear as well as songs recorded by Maggie Rogers, Snoop Dogg, Jay Z and Phantogram, among others.

In addition to Secretly Publishing, Secretly Group encompasses the record labels Dead Oceans, Jagjaguwar and Secretly Canadian.

“In the same tradition as the Secretly Group labels, our priority as a publisher is to be a transparent partner for the writers we serve, and advocate for the best possible deals. We appreciate that for independent artists, every micropenny counts, and with a small tight-knit team, we are constantly working to improve our systems and find the most efficient approach,” said Kathleen Cook, managing director of Secretly Publishing, in a release. “This new partnership with Songtrust will help us do just that. With Songtrust looking after overseas administration and promising thorough collections from every corner of the globe, we can assure Secretly’s writers that data will be clean and no stone will be left unturned.”

Songrust’s client roster also includes Sub Pop Publishing, ZJs Music Publishing (Average Joes Entertainment) and its sister company Downtown Music Publishing.

Sony/ATV UK has renewed its worldwide publishing deals with singer-songwriter Becky Hill and songwriter-producer-musician Mark Ralph.

Hill is best known for songs including “I Could Get Used to This” feat. Weiss, “Lose Control” feat. Meduza and Goodboys, “Heaven On My Mind” feat. Sigala, “Gecko (Overdrive)” feat. Oliver Heldens, “Better Off Without You” feat. Shift K3Y, “Piece of Me” with MK and “Back & Forth” with MK and Jonas Blue. Her latest single, “Space,” will be featured on her debut album slated for release on March 19, 2021.

In addition to the extension of her deal with Sony/ATV, Hill will recruit and mentor new songwriters through a publishing collaboration with the company.

Ralph has worked with artists including Rudimental (“These Days”), Years & Years (“King”) and Clean Bandit (“Rockabye,” “Rather Be” and “Symphony”), among others.

Over his career to date, Ralph has been nominated for an Ivor Novello Award (PRS Most Performed Work for Years & Years single “King”) and won Producer of the Year at the UK A&R Awards. In addition, the single “Rockabye” by Clean Bandit, which Ralph co-produced, was nominated for Best British Single and British Artist Video of the Year at the 2017 Brit Awards.

Wise Music Group has acquired the catalog of late Italian composer Riziero ‘Riz’ Ortolani.

Over the course of his career, Ortolani scored over 200 films, including several Spaghetti Westerns and Hollywood films such as The 7th Dawn, The Yellow Rolls-Royce, The Glory Boys, The Battle For Anzio, Buona Sera, Mrs. Campbell and The Valachi Papers.

Ortolani’s most famous composition, “More,” was written for the documentary Mondo Cane. It won the 1964 Grammy for Best Instrumental Theme and was also nominated for an Oscar. More recently, his music has been used in films such as Drive, Django Unchained, Kill Bill (Vols. I & II) and Inglourious Basterds.

BMG has signed singer-songwriter Emily Burns to a global publishing deal that includes all future releases as well as her EP I Love You, You’re The Worst, which was released this summer. She is best known for her track “Is It Just Me?”, which recently spawned a new version featuring JP Cooper.

Burns, who is signed to Island Records, recently toured with acts including Tove Styrke, James Arthur and Gabrielle Aplin and has sold out headlining shows in London and across Asia. She will soon announce tour dates for 2021.

Emerging dancehall songwriter and artist Emwah Warmington, p.k.a. Skillibeng, has signed a global publishing deal with Sony/ATV UK covering his catalog and future releases.

Hailing from Jamaica, Skillibeng broke out with his 2019 single “Brik Pan Brik,” which has garnered over 7 million YouTube views to date. Other recent songs include “Crocodile Teeth,” “50 Bag,” “Shake (Remix)” feat. Jada Kingdom and “Mr. Universe.”

Skillibeng has been working on a number of projects and recently collaborated with fellow dancehall artist Popcaan. His next mixtape, Prodigy 2, is slated for release on Dec. 23.

Spirit Music Group has signed artist and songwriter Liz Lokre to a global co-publishing deal. The agreement covers a portion of Lokre’s catalog as well as her future works.

As a songwriter, Lokre has collaborated with writers and producers including Adrian X, Ryan Ashley, MNEK, Brian West, Adam Messinger and Supa Dups. She most recently wrote on the song “Handle It” off K-pop group Twice’s new album Eyes Wide Open, released by Republic/JYP. Her latest single, “Where U Come From,” was released in October independently via Platoon.