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Thursday, July 29, 1999 Published at 14:18 GMT 15:18 UK


Spice rights sold

Spice Girls: Their catalogue is part of the deal

The rights to some of the world's most popular songs, including Wannabe by the Spice Girls, have been bought for £150m by EMI.

The company bought the catalogue from Windswept Pacific Entertainment, and now has the rights to 40,000 songs including Shout by Lulu, La Bamba by Richie Valens and Why Do Fools Fall In Love? by Frankie Lyman.

Other titles include That's The Way (I Like It) by KC and the Sunshine Band, Celebration by Kool and the Gang. Jack and Diane by John Mellencamp is also featured in the deal.

EMI chairman Eric Nicoli said: "We are buying a strong collection of well-known songs from Windswept, which will further strengthen our position as the number one music publisher and create value for shareholders."

[ image: Rod Stewart: Maggie May is now an EMI song]
Rod Stewart: Maggie May is now an EMI song
EMI's catalogue already includes work by Robbie Williams, Janet Jackson, Rod Stewart and Gloria Estefan.

Other Windswept artists that will now be added to EMI's roster are John Cougar Mellencamp Willie Nelson, and the late Ronnie Van Zant of Lynyrd Skynrd.

It also includes many isolated hits from the 1950s and 1960s.

EMI Music Publishing chairman Martin Bandier said: "No other place in the world houses as many of the foundation songs of the 1950s and early 1960s than Windswept."

Windswept Pacific is part of Japan's largest music publisher, Fujisankei.

Parts of the collection include songs from EMI artists whose copyrights the company did not already own, such as the Spice Girls. Others are songs that EMI artists composed before joining the company, such as Maggie May.

EMI now stands to make millions of pounds from in licensing fees for use of the songs in TV shows, films, and the Internet. It made £87.5m from music publishing last year - a third of the whole group's profits.

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