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Jay Z in Talks to Buy Prince’s Unreleased Music

Theo Wargo / Kevin Winter, Getty Images
Theo Wargo / Kevin Winter, Getty Images

Update:

L. Londell McMillan, an advisor to Prince’s estate, tells Billboard he has “no knowledge of any discussions in that report” and “there is no sale [of Prince’s music assets], and those responsible for the assets are not in discussions with anyone regarding a sale.”

Original Story:

There’s serious money in publishing, as Paul McCartney told Michael Jackson once, and Jay Z is reportedly ready to spend a small fortune to obtain the rights to Prince’s unreleased music, according to TMZ. According to the celebrity news site, Jay flew Prince’s sister, Tyka, and her husband Maurice Phillips, out to New York City a few weeks back to discuss a deal, making an offer of around $40 million for the locked away music.

While Tyka may be Prince’s only full sibling, she needs approval from all of his brothers and sisters as well as the trust managing the late singer’s estate before any deal gets done. The above mentioned figure was not confirmed by Jay’s camp, but word is he’s making a play for overall streaming rights, likely to bolster the exclusive content on his streaming service Tidal. Prince’s last album, Hit n Run Phase Two, was released exclusively on Tidal in December of 2015, though in summer of that same year, he pulled all of his music from streaming sites, writing on Twitter, “Spotify is co-owned by record labels, who hold 20 percent of the company’s stocks.”

Prince, who passed in late April at the age of 57, had said previously of digital music platforms, “I don’t see why I should give my new music to iTunes or anyone else. They won’t pay me an advance for it and then they get angry when they can’t get it.”

Hov of course knows the value of owning publishing rights, rapping on “Takeover,” “And you ain’t get a coin, nigga, you was getting fucked then/I know who I paid, God – Serchlite publishing.” The line was meant to be a diss to Nas, Jay sampling his song “The World Is Yours” on his own “Dead Presidents.”

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