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Publishing Briefs: Mojo Buys Country Hitmaker’s Catalog; Sony Signs ‘High Hopes’ Writer

This week in publishing news: UMP Nashville signs sync juggernaut Marc Scibilia, Milk & Honey teams with Oak Felder and HaHaHa on new global JV, and more.

Mojo Music & Media has acquired the songwriter share and co-publishing share for the catalog of hitmaking country songwriter Sharon Vaughn. From 1977-2004, Vaughn penned an impressive 28 hit songs, including Willie Nelson’s “My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys,” Waylon Jennings’ “Broken Promise Land,” Reba McEntire’s “I’m Not That Lonely Yet,” Patty Loveless’ “Lonely Too Long,” Randy Travis’ “Out Of My Bones,” and Trisha Yearwood’s “Powerful Thing.”  In a statement about the deal, Vaughn says she feels Mojo “will respect and enrich my catalogues and through their efforts my songs will realize their potential.” The company’s co-founder and CEO, Mark Fried, adding, “we’re honored she’s chosen us to caretake and promote her truly iconic body of work.”

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Sony Music Publishing has inked a publishing deal with songwriter/producer Jonas Jeberg, who is best known for songs like “High Hopes” by Panic! At the Disco, “Marry Me” by Jason Derulo, “Fetish” by Selena Gomez ft. Gucci Mane, “Rollercoaster” by Jonas Brothers, and many others. Jeberg is currently enjoying success on the Billboard Pop Airplay chart with “Maybe You’re the Problem” from British popstar Ava Max. Thomas Krottinger, VP of Creative, says of the deal, “We are excited to partner with Jonas and his team, and we look forward to supporting his creative journey.”

Universal Music Publishing Nashville has signed Marc Scibilia to an exclusive worldwide publishing deal. Though he hails from Nashville, the songwriter not locked in to writing any one genre, and he has cuts with artists ranging from Lennon Stella to Ben Rector to Rick Ross. Scibilia also has a penchant for syncs and is known for his work on a “This Land is Your Land” cover for the Jeep 2015 Super Bowl ad, the most Shazamed moment of the game. He also was featured in Samsung’s “Stay Together, Stay Apart” COVID-19 campaign and synced in the “Summer of Jeep” ad, which also featured him onscreen. He is currently working on a full length album to be released this fall, and lead singles “Smile” and “I Just Want You Around” are available now.

Milk & Honey Music + Sports + Ventures, multi-platinum producer Oak Felder, and HaHaHa Productions have launched a joint venture. Dubbed “Romdrops,” the trio’s JV came together during a songwriting retreat at Castle Bran (better known as “Dracula’s Castle”) in Transylvania. After cutting some tracks with the songwriting troupe, Peter Coquillard (Milk + Honey), Felder, and Smiley (HaHaHa Productions) realized, as Coquillard put it, “you never know where great talent will come from” and wanted to create a company that would live by that ethos. Felder calls RomDrops, “a publishing and production company created to expand global opportunities for artists, producers, and songwriters throughout the world.”

Warner Chappell Music has reached a publishing agreement with Warren Zeiders. A rising artist from the Warner Records roster, the publishing deal sees Zeiders records and compositions united under the WMG umbrella. The announcement arrives on the heels of his Grand Ole Opry debut and the gold certification of his song “Ride The Lightning” which is also enjoying success on TikTok for its high energy country flair.

Independent publisher Prescription Songs has signed Philadelphia-based artist, producer, and songwriter Francis “Fridayy” LeBlanc to a global deal. A collaborator of Rae Sremmurd, Lil Durk, Bryson Tiller, Chris Brown, Timbaland, and more, Fridayy’s was inked with the help of Prescription A&R Eddie Fourcell, managers Edgar Cutino (Test of Time Entertainment) and Chris Washington (AVAD), and attorneys Brian Darch and Jason Berger (Margolis Edelstein).

Ultra Music Publishing has opened a new studio in Liverpool, U.K. and christened its new location with a recent week-long songwriting camp, featuring 20 songwriters and musicians signed to the indie’s roster. The Liverpool base is a strategic move by Ultra and its U.K.-based sister companies — Helix and Payday Records — to attract new Northern English talents to the companies and to serve as a resource for its existing English roster.

Track Club — a new subscription music licensing platform from Marmoset — is now a TikTok sound partner, opening up their curated library of songs and records to brands for TikTok advertisements. “TikTok is driven by music, and discerning brands understand having the right music matters,” says Marmoset and Track Club CEO Ryan Wines in a statement. “We’re excited to offer the Marmoset and Track Club catalogs for anyone who wants to make the best impression with music, while also supporting strong values and fight for the greater social and civic good of humanity.”

Made in Memphis Entertainment (MIME)-owned companies — MIME Publishing and Beatroot — have signed deals with Nashville-based firm Power Entertainment. This includes publishing administration agreements for MIME Publishing’s Nick Drake, Joshua Blair, and Michael Carr and a distribution deal with Beatroot signee Yours Truly, Jai. A one-project deal for artist Raemi is also included in this multi-faceted deal. This is an extension of a pre-existing partnership between MIME and Power Entertainment, which began in 2020.