Dr. Dre is reportedly preparing to sell several of his music assets to Universal Music Group and Shamrock Capital.
According to Billboard, the music assets are expected to sell for over $200m (£164m). The deals will see Universal Music Group (UMG) acquire the master recordings for Dre’s 1992 debut album “The Chronic,” which will revert to Dre’s ownership of Death Row Entertainment in August.
The UMG deal would also include Dre’s share of Kendrick Lamar’s releases, through Top Dawg Entertainment’s deal with UMG subsidiary Interscope. Dre will retain his stake in the Aftermath label which he founded in 1996.
Shamrock Capital, meanwhile, will acquire Dre’s artist royalty assets on his first two solo albums, as well as his producer royalties and writer’s share of his song catalog where he doesn’t own a publishing. . It could also include Dre’s writer’s part in “The Chronic.” Billboard reports that Shamrock will also receive Dre’s share of his NWA artist royalties.
The reports come after Dre recently spoke out against the use of his music without his express permission. The rapper sent a cease and desist to Republican Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, after the far-right politician used his song “Still DRE” in a promotional video.
“I don’t license my music to politicians,” said Dre TMZ earlier this month. It is not yet known to what extent the rapper will be able to restrict the licensing of his music following the UGM and Shamrock Capital agreement.
Dre’s musical assets deal follows that of Phil Collins and his bandmates Genesis, who sold some of their song assets to Concord Music Group last September. Prior to that, Bruce Springsteen sold his masters and publishing rights to Sony Music in a deal worth around $500 million in 2021, while Bob Dylan sold his entire songwriting catalog at UMG in 2020.
Late last year, Keith Urban and Iggy Azalea sold their master recordings, with Azalea hitting eight figures for the deal.