Four Tet signs global publishing deal with UMPG amidst ongoing legal battle with Domino
Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) has announced that Kieran Hebdan (Four Tet) recently signed a global publishing deal with the company. Pete Simmons, director of A&R for the industry titan, announced the news with a statement that reads:
“Four Tet has soundtracked my life from GCSE revision to dance floors at university and now I get the pleasure to work with him. I’m honoured to represent a catalogue that means so much to not just me but the whole of UMPG.”
Hebden has currently been in the midst of an unprecedented legal dispute between himself and former label Domino regarding streaming royalties over his early work. Last year Hebden sued Domino over what he believes to be outdated and unfair royalties rates for the streaming of his music, citing that the label was using his original contract from 2001 to calculate his share of the royalties rate. The contract stated that Hebden would be entitled to 18% of royalties generated from future physical sales of his music, but the streaming era was not taken into consideration all those years ago. With streaming platforms such as Spotify and Apple Music usurping physical sales, Hebden argues that Domino should update his percentage of revenue to 50% rather than continue to apply the original 18%. The landmark case sees Hebden seek damages from Domino of up to £70,000, and demands that Domino apply the 50% percent royalties rate to his music for the remaining time that they own the rights to the work.
As a result of the ongoing case, Four Tet’s first four albums were pulled from streaming sites. Hebden cited that this was a breach of contract on Domino’s part and demanded that his masters be returned to him. A judge ruled that Hebden could go forward with this complaint, and following the new UMPG deal, his first three albums have returned to streaming services.