Bruce Springsteen’s $500 Million Sony Deal: Personal or Strictly Business?

In “The Godfather,” Michael Corleone said it’s not personal, but strictly business.

But for fans of Bruce Springsteen, the recent sale of his master recordings and music publishing rights to Sony for $500 million, according to Billboard, is a personal touch.

“It’s already an emotional thing,” said entertainment attorney David Chidekel, partner at Early Sullivan Wright Gizer & McRae. “Traditionally, the artists and their representatives didn’t see this as a business. It’s always been their art, so there’s an emotional component.”

That strikes a chord with Boss fans who have developed a bond with Springsteen’s songs like no other artist. But they have faith in their boss, says John Kelly, administrator of Brucebook’s Facebook page.

Bruce Springsteen, shown during an interview to promote his documentary

“Most people are pretty positive about it and have enough faith in Bruce after all these years to let him do his thing and leave him alone,” Kelly said. “I think a lot of people see it as an individual decision he deserved to make.”

He earned the right in part thanks to a highly publicized lawsuit against former manager Mike Appel over ownership of his music in 1976. Appel’s counterclaim prevented Springsteen from recording for 12 months. The early career drama frames the young Boss as a principled misfit whose purpose of art was decisive.

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