Madonna Rumored to Join Live Nation Madonna is reportedly leaving Warner Records to sign an unprecedented agreement with concert promoters Live Nation. The move signals a shift in the music industry toward deals that bring albums, live concerts and merchandising under one roof.
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Madonna Rumored to Join Live Nation

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Madonna Rumored to Join Live Nation

Madonna Rumored to Join Live Nation

Madonna Rumored to Join Live Nation

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/15178896/15178619" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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Madonna is reportedly leaving Warner Records to sign an unprecedented agreement with concert promoters Live Nation. The move signals a shift in the music industry toward deals that bring albums, live concerts and merchandising under one roof.

STEVE INSKEEP, Host:

NPR's Karen Grigsby Bates reports.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "MATERIAL GIRL")

KAREN GRIGSBY BATES: The reported Live Nation agreement might move Madonna further up in the Forbes ranks by this time next year. Since the Wall Street Journal says the 10-year deal will pay her $120 million in cash and stocks.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "MATERIAL GIRL")

MADONNA: (Singing) 'Cause we are living in a material world. And I am a material girl. You know, that we are living in a material world. And I am a material girl.

GRIGSBY BATES: Bob Lefsetz is a music industry analyst whose Lefsetz Letter is closely watched inside the industry. He says fierce competition drove Live Nation to pay so much for Madonna.

BOB LEFSETZ: Now, there are really just a couple of major touring companies. They're fighting over arena-level acts. That's why the number is so big.

GRIGSBY BATES: Live Nation's tickets can be expensive, but Lefsetz says, its CEO, Michael Rapino, is betting that this won't be a barrier for his clients.

LEFSETZ: His people who go to the concerts - and Live Nation is by far the largest shareholder in this sphere - go barely over one time a year. So they'll save their money to pay 150 to 250 bucks to see Madonna.

GRIGSBY BATES: Given the interest in seeing her ever-changing onstage persona, Madonna could turn into a senior rock staple like another group who's done well with Live Nation.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "YOU CAN'T ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU WANT")

MICK JAGGER: (Singing) You can't always get what you want. But if you try sometimes you might find. You get what you need.

GRIGSBY BATES: Karen Grigsby Bates, NPR News.

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