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"I am always open to discussion with the RIAA for some sort of compro-
mise solution that
would make both parties happy."
SACTOWN SMACKDOWN:
IS PEACE AT HAND?
Rumblings of a Compromise Between RAC and RIAA on the Seven-Year Statute
Has the Recording Artists Coalition been told it has little chance of repealing California Labor Code Section 2855, subdivision B, of California’s seven-year labor statute?

Sources in Sacramento have confirmed the artists’ rights group has been alerted that prospects appear bleak for Senate Bill 1249, which seeks to repeal the amendment allowing record labels to sue artists who attempt to leave labels after seven years while still owing undelivered albums.

This new scenario could mean the RAC and the RIAA may attempt a compromise.

“They called and I agreed it would be useful to talk and have a dialogue to see if we can resolve all this,” said RIAA Chief Hilary Rosen, who dismissed any talk of a compromise.

Managers involved with the RAC would not go on the record but acknowledged that preliminary conversations regarding a potential compromise have begun with the RIAA.

SB 1249 was introduced by California State Senator Kevin Murray, a former William Morris music agent. Murray allied himself with Don Henley and his newly formed RAC. Henley, Sheryl Crow, Stevie Nicks, Beck, Tom Morello, as well as manager Jim Guerinot and attorneys John Branca and Jay Cooper stormed Sacramento on Jan. 23 to lobby on behalf of the bill.

“Talk of bleak prospects for the bill is absolutely inaccurate. It’s future is anything but bleak,” said Murray. “I am always open to discussion with the RIAA for some sort of compromise solution that would make both parties happy.”

In addition to lobbying for SB 1249, Henley and the RAC have set up several fundraising concerts in Los Angeles. According to Henley, the money raised will help RAC become an effective lobbying voice for artists at both the state and federal levels.

The concerts will take place at four venues in the Southern California area and are set for Feb. 26, one day before the Grammy Awards. The Eagles, Billy Joel, John Fogerty, Nicks and Crow will perform at the Forum. The Dixie Chicks, Trisha Yearwood, Dwight Yoakam and Emmylou Harris will come together at the Universal Amphitheater. No Doubt, the Offspring and Weezer will appear at the Long Beach Arena. Beck, Eddie Vedder and Mike Ness will play the Wiltern.

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