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Paul McCartney, Don Henley, Katy Perry, More Pen Letter to SiriusXM: ‘We Will Boycott’ (EXCLUSIVE)

At issue: The satellite radio giant's opposition to a portion of the Music Modernization Act.

In an unprecedented show of solidarity, some 150 artists and executives, including Paul McCartney, Don Henley, Carole King, Katy Perry, U2’s The Edge, Pink, Sia and hitmaker Max Martin, have signed a letter addressed to the board members of Liberty Media, corporate parent to SiriusXM. At issue: The satellite radio giant’s opposition to Music Modernization Act, which is thisclose to passing in the Senate. Specifically: SiriusXM has raised objections to portions of the bill, which aims to protect recordings released before 1972 from falling out of copyright protection, including the exclusion of terrestrial radio from mandatory payouts to rights holders.

Says attorney Dina LaPolt, one of several advocates working on behalf of the MMA (as an attorney-advisor to SONA, or Songwriters of North America), in a statement to Variety: “As we continue to move from a product based business to a service based business, bringing the antiquated copyright act into the digital realm, SiriusXM’s unwillingness to support songwriters and artists is complete travesty given that every other group in the music industry has endorsed the bill. This shows their disgusting corporate greed at the expense of America’s greatest treasures..…. our legacy artists.”

Adds Ross Golan, songwriter and host of the popular podcast “And the Writer Is…”: “The music community is standing in solidarity like never before. In only 48 hours, 200 legends put their name on the line to show that we are not just music. We are an army. This letter is only a warning shot.”

The Music Modernization Act is scheduled to be “hotlined” today by the Senate — at which point any Senator has 24 hours in which to object to the bill passing out of the Senate without an official vote (Senate leadership does this for bills with high cosponsor counts that they know would sail through if a vote was forced or needed) — the legislation is facing one final hurdle in the form of objection by SiriusXM.

The letter, which was also signed by Carly Simon, Ryan Tedder, Charlie Puth, Gloria and Emilio Estefan as well as Stevie Nicks and Mick Fleetwood, Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, and members of The Doors and the Mamas and the Papas, is addressed to SiriusXM chairman of the board Greg Maffei, programming chief Scott Greenstein and CEO Jim Meyer along with the Liberty Media board members. The endorsement of so many top artists represents a credible threat to the business of SiriusXM’s music channels, particularly as it involves specialty programs — for instance, the Beatles channel, among the most popular of SiriusXM’s offerings.

The MMA bill was passed unanimously in the Senate Judiciary Committee in June following a unanimous approval of similar legislation by the House of Representatives a month earlier.

Read the letter to SiriusXM in its entirety below, and read SiriusXM’s response here:

Dear Greg Maffei, Scott Greenstein and Jim Meyer and Liberty Media Board of Directors Evan D. Malone, David E. Rapley, Larry E. Romrell, Brian M. Deevy, Andrea L. Wong, Robert R. Bennett, M. Ian G. Gilchrist and John C. Malone:

I’m writing you with grave concern about SiriusXM’s opposition to the Music Modernization Act (Classics Act included).

I’m CCing some of the greatest songwriters and artists in the history of the music business to show our solidarity in support of this legislation in its current form.  We are all aware of your company’s objections and trepidation but let me say that this is an opportunity for SiriusXM to take a leadership position. As you are aware, 415 Representatives and 76 Senators have already cosponsored the MMA along with industry consensus. It’s SiriusXM vs all of us. We can either fight to the bitter end or celebrate this victory together. Rather than watch bad press and ill will pile up against SiriusXM, why not come out supporting the most consequential music legislation in 109 years? We do not want to fight and boycott your company but we will as we have other opponents. Stand with us! Be brave and take credit for being the heroes who helped the MMA become historic law!  Momentum is building against SiriusXM and you still have an opportunity to come out on the right side of history. We look forward to your endorsement but the fire is burning and only you can put this out.

Sincerely yours,

Ross Golan and Legends CC-ed Here

Artists/Musicians:

Sir Paul McCartney
Don Henley
Stevie Nicks
Mick Fleetwood
Steven Tyler
Joe Perry
Carole King
Carly Simon
Katy Perry

P!nk
OneRepublic: Ryan Tedder
Sia
John Legend

Adam Dorn
Adam Gorgoni
Adam Levine
Alessia Cara
All-4-One
Andrew Wyatt (Miike Snow band)
Bebe Rexha
Bird and The Bee: Inara George
Carly Simon
Carole King
Charlie Puth
Chris Isaak
Colbie Caillat
Dolly Parton
Eddie Money
Eurythmics: Dave Stewart
Garbage: Shirley Manson
Gloria & Emilio Estefan
Grace VanderWaal
Hootie & the Blowfish: Darius Rucker, Mark Bryan, Dean Felber and Jim Sonefeld
James Taylor
Jason Derulo
JD Souther
Jefferson Airplane: Grace Slick, Jorma Kaukonen, and Jack Casady
Jesse Carmichael
Jewel
Kasim Sulton
KC and The Sunshine Band: Harry Casey
Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds
Kevin Cronin
Little Feet: Lowell George Estate
Lori McKenna
LP
Melissa Manchester
Mindi Abair
Nelly Furtado
Rascal Flatts: Gary LeVox
Rusty Anderson
Sean Lennon
Semisonic: Dan Wilson
Sonic Youth: Kim Gordon
The Doors: John Densmore Robby Krieger
The Fray
The Mamas And The Papas: Michelle Phillips
The Pixies: Joey Santiago
The Pretenders: Chrissie Hynde
Thomas Rhett
Tom Higgenson: Plain White T’s
Tom Waits
Yeah Yeah Yeahs: Karen O and Nick Zinner

Songwriters/Producers:

Ali Tamposi
Allee Willis
Ammar Malik
Andre Lindal
Andreas Carlsson
Andrew Cedar
Anne Preven
Anthony Preston
Antonia Armato
Ashley Gorley
Benny Blanco
Bert Berns
Billy Mann
Billy Steinberg
Bonnie McKee
Bryan Michael-Cox
Burt Bacharach
Busbee
Captain Cuts
Charlie Handsome
Claude Kelley
Claudia Brant
Cynthia Weil & Barry Man
Dallas Davidson
Damon Boot
Damon Bunetta
Damon Sharpe
Danielle Brisebois
Dave Bassett
David Hodges
David Simmons
Desmond Child
Diane Warren
Doc Pomus Estate
Emile Ghantous
Erica Discoll
Erika Ender
Ester Dean
Eve Nelson
Greg Kurstin
Greg Wells
Harvey Mason
Ian Kirkpatrick
J Kash
Jack Kugell
James Newton Howard
Jason Evigan
Jay Landers
Jayson Dezuzio
Jeff Trott
Jesse Shatkin
John Ryan
Jud Friedman
Julian Bunetta
Justin Tranter
Kara DioGuardi
Lauren Christy
Linda Perry
Lindy Robbins
Louis Bell
Louise Goffin
Luke Laird
Marc Shaiman
Max Martin
Michelle Lewis
Mike Stoller
Mozella
Mutt Lange
Neil Ormandy
Nicolle Galyon
Nolan Lambroza
Oak Felder
Oliver Heldens
Richard Jay Alexander
Rick Nowels
Ricky Reed
Rock Mafia
Ross Copperman
Rudy Perez
Sam Hollander
Sarah Aarons
Sarah Hudson
Savan Kotecha
Shelly Peiken
Simon Wilcox
Skylar Grey
Stargate
Stephen Bray
Steve Lashley
Steve Solomon
Steven Lashley
Stuart Crichton
The Edge
The Heavyweights
The Stereotypes
Tim James
Toby Gad
Troy Verges
Wally Gagel
Walter Afanassief
Wayne Kirkpatrick
Xandy Berry
Zach Crowell

Executives/Business:

Aaron Bay Schuck
Aaron Rosenberg
Adam Anders
Alastair Lloyd Webber
Amanda Berman
Amanda Berman
Andrew Gould
Andrew Luftman
Ben Mawson
Ben Singer
Brendan Okrent
Connie Lim
Dan Petel
David Gray
Dina LaPolt
Ed Howard
Ed Millet
Jeff Jampol
Jon Lind
Justin Frazier
Katie Vinten
Kenny Aronoff
Kristina Grossman
Larry Wade
Lou Taylor
Maria Egan
Rachel Kurstin
Sheryl Louis
Susan Genco

Companies:

Modest Management
Big Deal Music
Milk And Honey
Mega House Music Mgmt.
Decible Entertainment

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