BMG has acquired from Fuji Music Group (FMG) a majority interest in the legendary ARC Music publishing catalog including many of the greats of US blues and rock‘n’roll, including songs made famous by Chuck Berry, The Beach Boys, Bo Diddley, Howlin’ Wolf and John Lee Hooker.
Following the deal BMG and FMG have agreed they will work together to explore additional opportunities with the intention of creating a portfolio of evergreen copyrights.
ARC Music was founded in 1948 by the Chess brothers Leonard and Phil Chess as the music publishing counterpart of their Chess Records label. It holds the rights to some of the most well-known American music of the past five decades including blues and rock’n’roll songs such as ‘Surfin’ USA’, ‘Johnny B. Goode’, ‘See You Later Alligator’, ‘Book Of Love’ and ‘Roll Over Beethoven’ (fuller list below).
The deal further builds BMG’s representation of the classics of American popular music. The company already publishes songs by Willie Dixon, much of the Johnny Cash catalog and last year acquired rights in the Buddy Holly estate controlled by the star’s widow, Maria Elena Holly.