While SiriusXM satellite radio has escaped the pre-1972 music royalties woods with a settlement, three major broadcast radio groups — iHeartMedia, Cumulus Media and CBS (owner of CBS Radio) — now find themselves being sued along similar lines. This is according to a press release and a piece from Law360 (gated, free sign-up).
ABS Entertainment is suing the large group owners in California, all three have music-playing California properties, for royalties on pre-1972 music that it controls. Its major property is the Hi Records catalog, notably singer Al Green.
The suit is modeled on the recently successful “Flo and Eddie” litigation against SiriusXM and involves at least one attorney that was involved in that action, Law360 notes.
Some radio broadcasters and the National Association of Broadcasters recently made a countermove of their own on pre-1972 recordings and the “Flo and Eddie” decision.