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Music deal

Hipgnosis buys producer Iovine’s catalogue

Simple Minds and John Lennon worked with Jimmy Iovine

Hipgnosis Songs Fund has acquired the music catalogue of Jimmy Iovine, a highly influential record producer in the 1970s and 1980s and one of the most important record executives and music entrepreneurs.

Hipgnosis, with its adviser The Family (Music), will obtain 100% of Iovine’s catalogue of worldwide producer royalties comprising  259 songs and his film production royalties for Eminem’s ‘8 Mile’ and ‘Get Rich or Die Tryin’, based on 50 Cent’s album of the same name.

Jimmy Iovine rose to prominence as an engineer working with John Lennon (‘Walls & Bridges’, ‘Rock & Roll’) and Bruce Springsteen (‘Born To Run’, ‘Darkness On The Edge Of Town’).

In 1978 he produced Patti Smith’s critically acclaimed, ‘Easter’, one of the most culturally important albums of its time, and its UK Top 5 hit single ‘Because The Night’.

Following up on this success, Iovine produced Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ breakthrough third album ‘Damn The Torpedoes’ in 1979 which was certified 3x platinum in the US in the year of its release.

In the 80’s Jimmy Iovine produced some of the most important albums of the decade including Dire Straits’ ‘Making Movies’, Stevie Nicks’ debut solo album ‘Bella Donna’, U2’s ‘Under a Blood Red Sky’ and ‘Rattle and Hum’, Simple Minds’ ‘Once Upon A Time’, and The Pretenders’ ‘Get Close’.

Moving away from production in 1990, Jimmy Iovine co-founded Interscope becoming one of the most prominent figures in the music industry and one of the most important people in Hip Hop, developing the careers of Tupac, Dr Dre and Eminem.

He also reinvigorated U2 with their album ‘All That You Can Leave Behind’ and hit single ‘Beautiful Day’, both of which reached Number 1 all over the world, before going on to have massive success with Gwen Stefani, Nine Inch Nails, Black Eyes Peas, One Republic, Lady Gaga and many others. Interscope was the hottest label in music for many years and “The House That Jimmy Built” continues to have massive success today.

In 2008, Iovine founded ‘Beats Electronics’ and Beats Music with Dr Dre. ‘Beats Electronics’ went on to dominate the headphone market before becoming a highly influential and massively successful lifestyle brand. It was sold to Apple Inc in 2016 for $3 billion with Beats Music becoming the foundation for Apple Music.

Merck Mercuriadis, founder of The Family (Music) and Hipgnosis Songs Fund, said: “While barely in my teens I noticed that so many of my favourite albums had one name in common.


“The best albums by John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, Patti Smith all had Jimmy Iovine on them. This continued through the 80’s with Stevie Nicks, Dire Straits, U2, Simple Minds, The Pretenders and more from Tom and Patti and I have been glued to everything Jimmy does ever since.”

Iovine said:  “I’m happy that my work as a producer with so many great artists has found the right home with Merck and Hipgnosis. I am going to use the proceeds from the deal to help Iovine Young Academy’s initiative to build a high school in South LA as part of the Iovine Young Academy at USC and continue our efforts to support education.”

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