Spotify settles a $1.6 billion claim over songwriter’s rights

The firm represents Neil Young, Weezer's Rivers Cuomo, Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon, and Stevie Nicks

Spotify has settled a $1.6 billion (£1.3bn) claim over songwriter and publishing rights for an undisclosed amount.

The wide-ranging lawsuit was initially filed on December 29 2017 by Wixen Music Publishing over the alleged use of more than 10,000 songs without a license or compensation.

The firm looks after compositions by high profile songwriters, including Neil Young, Weezer‘s Rivers Cuomo, Sonic Youth‘s Kim Gordon, Stevie Nicks, Zach De La Rocha and Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys, and the late Tom Petty plus many others.

Neil Young live

Neil Young performs live

The two companies released a joint statement, which read: “Wixen Music Publishing and Spotify USA have agreed to a final dismissal of the lawsuit filed by Wixen Music Publishing late last year.

“The conclusion of that litigation is a part of a broader business partnership between the parties, which fairly and reasonably resolves the legal claims asserted by Wixen Music Publishing relating to past licensing of Wixen’s catalog and establishes a mutually-advantageous relationship for the future.”

Meanwhile, Neil Young has launched a new subscription service and app that collates material from his entire career.

A subscription to the Neil Young Archives (NYA) includes a complete back catalogue of audio and visual content, plus access to new work.

A recent report has flagged up a potential difficulty UK users may have with streaming sites – including Spotify – following Brexit.

Current regulations mean that streaming services cannot discriminate between a user at home in the UK or travelling throughout the rest of Europe. However, newly-released government documents suggest that the arrangement would “cease to apply” in the event of a no-deal Brexit.