Big news: the United States Senate has passed the Music Modernization Act by unanimous consent.
The passing of the bipartisan bill, which was co-sponsored by more than 80 Senators, sets into motion an overhaul of music licensing legislation in the US.
The comprehensive bill includes the CLASSICS Act, legislation that guarantees artists and labels who recorded music before 1972 a federal right to be paid for those recordings when played by digital radio outlets.
The Senate-passed bill now awaits reconsideration by the House and signature by the President.
Today’s news follows the unanimous passing of the bill in the US House of Representatives in April.
NMPA President and CEO David Israelite said: “Today is a momentous day for songwriters, artists, composers, producers, engineers and the entire industry that revolves around them. The Senate vote marks a true step forward towards fairness for the people at the heart of music who have long been undervalued due to outdated laws.
“This was a long and complex process but ultimately the music industry has come out stronger and more united than ever. We commend Senators Orrin Hatch, Lamar Alexander, Chuck Grassley and Senate Leadership for swiftly moving this bill to the floor. Now we anxiously await the House’s final approval of the MMA and seeing it signed into law.”
Mitch Glazier, President, Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) said: “As legendary band the Grateful Dead once said in an iconic pre-1972 song, ‘what a long strange trip it’s been.’ It’s been an epic odyssey, and we’re thrilled to almost be at our destination.
“For the modern U.S. Senate to unanimously pass a 185-page bill is a herculean feat, only achievable because of the grit, determination and mobilization of thousands of music creators across the nation.
“The result is a bill that moves us toward a modern music licensing landscape better founded on fair market rates and fair pay for all. At long last, a brighter tomorrow for both past and future generations of music creators is nearly upon us. We are indebted to the leadership of Senators Hatch, Grassley, Feinstein, Alexander, Coons, Kennedy and Whitehouse for helping get us there.”
Read more on Music Business Worldwide.