John Fogerty, who is currently featured in the American Songwriter “Legends” print magazine issue, has received some good news.
He’s acquired a majority ownership in the Creedence Clearwater Revival catalog after 40 years, reports Billboard. Fogerty previously relinquished the songs in an effort to get out of his Fantasy Records deal, according to the publication. He’s been working to get the songs back ever since. And now, he’s achieved that goal.
The deal was made for an undisclosed sum and includes hits like “Fortunate Son,” “Bad Moon Rising,” “Proud May,” “Down on the Corner,” “Up Around the Bend,” and “Green River.”
“I’m the dad [of these songs],” Fogerty told Billboard. “I created them. They never should have been taken away in the first place. And that hijacking left such a massive hole in me.”
He’d previously given up the rights to Saul Zaentz’s Fantasy Records in 1980 to get out of a contract he signed in 1968.
Concord purchased Fantasy Records in 2004 and gave Fogerty back his artist royalties. The singer soon regained another portion of his publishing under U.S. copyright law after the songs turned 56 years old. Forgery’s wife and manager, Julie Fogerty, used that fact as leverage to negotiate majority control of the worldwide rights.
“While John is having the time of his life out there on the road, with his kids playing with him and celebrating this music, [I thought], why can’t we take those few years left [before the titles revert] and not have them give them to us, but we’ll buy them,” Julie explained. “Whatever the value plus a little bonus. We’ll figure out how to come up with the money and we’ll just buy that. [Concord’s] not going to lose because they’ll have the value.”
Fogerty told the publication he hopes to one day gain total control of the songs.
“The happiest way to look at it is, yeah, it isn’t everything,” he said. “It’s not a 100% win for me, but it’s sure better than it was. I’m really kind of still in shock. I haven’t allowed my brain to really, actually, start feeling it yet.”
Photo: Nela Koenig