Tom Petty’s widow Jane Petty now stays the only real plaintiff within the lawsuit.
Steve Earle is the newest artist to drop his claims in opposition to Universal Music Group relating to the 2008 hearth on the backlot of Universal Studios Hollywood. Earle filed a voluntary request with the courtroom on Monday (March 23) to dismiss his claims “with out prejudice,” thereby reserving his proper to litigate these claims sooner or later.
With Earle exiting, Tom Petty’s widow Jane Petty stays the only real plaintiff within the lawsuit in opposition to UMG relating to losses as a result of hearth. On March 13, Soundgarden and Tupac Shakur’s property additionally filed voluntary motions to drop their claims in opposition to UMG. Hole dropped out of the go well with final August. The putative class motion lawsuit was initially filed in June 2019.
These revelations observe the March 5 launch of an inside memo from UMG senior vp recording studios and archive administration Pat Kraus to employees offering an exhaustive replace on the label’s exhaustive, ongoing stock survey efforts. In the memo, which was obtained by ., he wrote that, opposite to reporting by The New York Times Magazine that first broke information of the hearth’s destruction in June 2019, “lower than 0.1 %” of the greater than 150,000 belongings he and his group have reviewed thus far had been “unique recordings” destroyed by the hearth.
“For the only a few unique recordings we imagine had been impacted, virtually all had beforehand been commercially launched and we have now positioned safeties, copies or digital options for each single album,” he wrote. “In the one occasion the place an unreleased album was affected, we have now positioned a number of copies and we might nonetheless launch the album if the artist needs. We are additionally at present working with a couple of artists and estates to find masters and copies which will exist of their archives.”
According to the memo, a group of greater than 70 specialists have been enterprise the “exhaustive work” of reviewing belongings, with Kraus noting that it may take “so long as a number of weeks” to research belongings for a single artist. He added that they’re prioritizing their work primarily based on direct requests from artists or their representatives, with a complete of 392 requests having been obtained and 209 responded to because the New York Times Magazine tales had been printed.
The memo regularly downplays the scope of the losses instructed within the New York Times Magazine tales, which included an inventory of 830 artists whose unique recordings might have been destroyed within the 2008 blaze, together with Aretha Franklin, Nirvana and Elton John. Kraus famous solely 5% of UMG’s whole belongings had been saved within the Universal Studios vault that burned, and that the majority of these supplies weren’t grasp recordings. Of the 19 artists whose masters had been confirmed by UMG to have been destroyed, he mentioned, they’ve managed to trace down secondary copies “for practically all” of them.
Attorneys for Jane Petty haven’t responded to .’s request for remark.