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Robert Fripp Quits Music Over Rights Fight

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Lima96 View Drop Down
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    Posted: September 05 2012 at 20:38

http://www.progrockmag.com/news/robert-fripp-quit-music-over-rights-fight/

Robert Fripp Quit Music Over Rights Fight

Martin Kielty at 06:46am September 4 2012
Robert Fripp (Picture by Sean Coon from Greensboro, USA}

Fightin Fripp: Robert to focus on logal battle

Robert Fripp says his legal battle against Universal Music Group has rendered his musical career “an exercise in futility” – and that’s why he’s given it up.

The King Crimson mainman has been embroiled in a rights fight with the giant label for five years, leading to his abandonment of music-making, with no certainty he’ll return.

He’s furious over the way in which Universal has bought up a series of independent labels that own parts of his back-catalogue, and believes it’s led to the release of unauthorised and unaccounted works under his name.

He cites the example of rapper Kanye West’s single Power, based on Crimson’s classic track 21st Century Schizoid Man – which had been heard over a million times on YouTube before he was even asked whether the sample could be used.

Fripp tells FT.com: “I couldn’t concentrate on music, so I made the choice to give up my career as a musician in the frontline to deal with the business.”

He says the arrangement between artist and label has “moved from a symbiotic relationship to a parasitic relationship.”

His last live outings were in 2009 when he performed with wife Toyah Willcox’s band the Humans and toured with Theo Travis to support the duo’s Threads album. Last year saw the release of his collaboration with Jakko Jakszyk and Mel Collins, entitled A Scarcity Of Miracles. Since then he’s ended his involvement with creative projects.

Fripp says: “Going back to early King Crimson, the remarkable explosion of the creative impulse came from these young men who didn’t know what they were doing, yet were able to do it.

“What has changed in 40 years? It’s very simple: 40 years ago there was a market economy. Today there is a market society – today everything, including ethics, has a price.”

But that doesn’t mean Fripp’s fight is all about money. He says: “Music is a language in which we can express our struggle with what it is to be a human being. This is at the centre of what created King Crimson.

“Today I remain responsible for that. How can I lie to that? If I do, I cease to be human.”

Fripp’s own label DGMlive will release a 40th anniversary edition of King Crimson album Larks’ Tongues in Aspic on October 15. It will be available as a CD/DVD package, a double-CD pack and a 15-disc box set limited to 7000 units.

Very sad news indeed CryCryCryCry



Edited by Lima96 - September 05 2012 at 20:39
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Horizons Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 21:09
Stupid reason to quit, though no where near as bad as Collins.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Epignosis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 21:11
Then Fripp is a sellout of a different sort, is he not?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote stonebeard Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 21:19
Robert Fripp has a musical career these days?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote twosteves Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 21:23
he should come out of retirement with Bruford and form The League of Retired Crimson Gentleman---
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Lima96 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 21:36
Originally posted by twosteves

he should come out of retirement with Bruford and form The League of Retired Crimson Gentlemen---
LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Quote KingCrInuYasha Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 22:20
Why do I get the strange feeling that one of these days, Fripp's gonna do with his art what Frank Zappa's estate recently did with his? That is, halt the release of his stuff until he can get a much better grip on the rights.

As for him retiring, it's not that much of a loss for the world. He hasn't really done anything interesting since the 80's and listening to some samples of King Crimson's work from Thrak onwards hasn't changed my opinion. Kind of dropped the ball on the whole "any artist worthy of the name disbands" thing. Oh well.
He looks at this world and wants it all... so he strikes, like Thunderball!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Catcher10 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 22:58
Happens day in and day out in the music biz......not a reason to quit making music. Sounds like he just needs a break to refuel whatever creative juices went dry.......
 
I agree...reform King Crimson and go back to square one before people forget why he even plays music.
      
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Ambient Hurricanes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 23:20
Originally posted by Robert Fripp

“What has changed in 40 years? It’s very simple: 40 years ago there was a market economy. Today there is a market society – today everything, including ethics, has a price.”


Quoted for truth.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote darkshade Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 23:23
I have the power to believe that he'll return to making fantastic music, hopefully as King Crimson.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Ambient Hurricanes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 23:26
^Off topic, but your avatar is hilarious. 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote darkshade Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 23:28
Why thank you.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Atavachron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 05 2012 at 23:35
Of course he'll never quit making music, and recording and...yes...maybe even selling it!   As KC or not--  remember Discipline was originally a project independent of Crimson.   What's odd is why he hasn't just fully embraced self-production.  There isn't really a "music business" anymore.  You either see the money you make or you don't.  His rant seems increasingly whiny.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Tony R Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 06 2012 at 06:13
Originally posted by Atavachron

Of course he'll never quit making music, and recording and...yes...maybe even selling it!   As KC or not--  remember Discipline was originally a project independent of Crimson.   What's odd is why he hasn't just fully embraced self-production.  There isn't really a "music business" anymore.  You either see the money you make or you don't.  His rant seems increasingly whiny.

I think it is sad that a man can't fight to protect his own intellectual property without being accused of being "whiny". Fripp continues to bang on about this because the situation has not resolved itself. I applaud his fight with the record companies and his resilience and above all his consistency.
Certainly if you had an uninsured family heirloom, say a painting, that was stolen and sold on and on, you wouldn't just give up trying to retrieve it even if it was difficult and costly, unless you didn't have the resources or the stomach for confrontation. This man does and that is good.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote octopus-4 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 06 2012 at 07:03
If I were Fripp I'd do the same. Unfortunately I'm not Ermm
Curiosity killed a cat, Schroedinger only half.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ExittheLemming Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 06 2012 at 07:15
Kudos to Bob for taking a stand (albeit a futile one) I guess. I wouldn't pretend to be a lawyer or anything but:
He’s furious over the way in which Universal has bought up a series of independent labels that own parts of his back-catalogue, and believes it’s led to the release of unauthorised and unaccounted works under his name.

This might sound glib, given the dubiety of the quoted source but if such entities do own this material, don't they have the right to sell it to whoever they like?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Nogbad_The_Bad Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 06 2012 at 07:27
Nope because most of those labels do not have the digital rights to Fripps music but release it anyway then take years to think about taking it down.
 
This is old news, Fripp's last Crimson album was 2003 (I'm not counting Fripp, Jakszyk, Collins, which was not KC) and last tour was 2008.
 
He's been fighting this fight ever since EGM (I think) screwed him over.  It's just on  on going battle he'll never win.
 
Personally I'm enjoying his side project like the Ambient soundscape stuff he continues to release with Theo Travis.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Progosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 06 2012 at 11:35
Originally posted by Tony R

 

I think it is sad that a man can't fight to protect his own intellectual property without being accused of being "whiny". Fripp continues to bang on about this because the situation has not resolved itself. I applaud his fight with the record companies and his resilience and above all his consistency.
Certainly if you had an uninsured family heirloom, say a painting, that was stolen and sold on and on, you wouldn't just give up trying to retrieve it even if it was difficult and costly, unless you didn't have the resources or the stomach for confrontation. This man does and that is good.
[/QUOTE]
Word.
 
There is a valid business end to music and a parasitic one.  Our friend Fripp is fighting the parasites.  It is about getting the royalties for his work, and having control over how his work is distributed and released.  I hope he is merely taking a hiatus rather than retiring, even if at the current moment he cannot see creating more music.
The world of sound is certainly capable of infinite variety and, were our sense developed, of infinite extensions. -- George Santayana, "The Sense of Beauty"
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Equality 7-2521 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 06 2012 at 13:07
Yeah. I'm not exactly sympathetic. If the only thing keeping him from quitting was a miserly ownership of recordings, then that probably explains why his music's become so banal.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote lazland Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 06 2012 at 13:44
Originally posted by Tony R

Originally posted by Atavachron

Of course he'll never quit making music, and recording and...yes...maybe even selling it!   As KC or not--  remember Discipline was originally a project independent of Crimson.   What's odd is why he hasn't just fully embraced self-production.  There isn't really a "music business" anymore.  You either see the money you make or you don't.  His rant seems increasingly whiny.

I think it is sad that a man can't fight to protect his own intellectual property without being accused of being "whiny". Fripp continues to bang on about this because the situation has not resolved itself. I applaud his fight with the record companies and his resilience and above all his consistency.
Certainly if you had an uninsured family heirloom, say a painting, that was stolen and sold on and on, you wouldn't just give up trying to retrieve it even if it was difficult and costly, unless you didn't have the resources or the stomach for confrontation. This man does and that is good.

Absolutely agree. He has been very consistent in his fight over many years now. It is why he formed the Discipline label in the first place.


In Lazland, life is transient. Prog is permanent.
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