We are family: Hipgnosis acquires stake in Bernard Edwards catalogue

We are family: Hipgnosis acquires stake in Bernard Edwards catalogue

Hipgnosis Songs has acquired a share in another big catalogue. The investment company has taken a 37.5% stake in Bernard Edwards’ song collection.

It follows Hipgnosis’ acquisition of catalogues of songs by The Dream and Poo Bear.

Edwards is best known for his partnership with Nile Rodgers in Chic. He co-wrote songs for bands and artists including Chic, Sister Sledge and Diana Ross. 

The Board of Hipgnosis Songs Fund Limited and its investment adviser, The Family (Music) Limited, announced the acquisition today. Rodgers is a member of The Family (Music) Limited’s advisory board and continues to promote and perform numerous songs within the catalogue.

The catalogue comprises 290 songs, including Everybody Dance, Le Freak, I Want Your Love, Good Times, He's The Greatest Dancer, We Are Family, Lost in Music and I’m Coming Out. In addition, many of the songs have been extensively sampled, remixed or reissued leading to new hits, including Rapper’s Delight and songs by the Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, Puff Daddy and Justin Timberlake.

Merck Mercuriadis, founder of The Family (Music) Limited and Hipgnosis Songs, said: “Bernard and Nile together created one of the most iconic catalogues of all time from Le Freak, which is the biggest-selling single in the history of Atlantic Records, to Good Times which is arguably the most interpolated and sampled song of all time. From Everybody Dance to I’m Coming Out and Upside Down to We Are Family their songs are classics and, to anyone who knows hits, the brand of Rodgers and Edwards is as meaningful as Rodgers and Hammerstein, Leiber and Stoller, Jagger and Richards or Lennon and McCartney. 

“Importantly their songs have earned as much from the many songs derived from them, such as the No.1 songs Rapper’s Delight, Gettin' Jiggy With It and Lady, as they have from the original works. It's a privilege for Nile and I to now be the custodians to this important piece of their legacy.” 

Rodgers said: “There will never be another Bernard Edwards. I have the time of my life playing these amazing songs we created together everyday, but I will never be able to replace him and the special chemistry we had. Happily, that magic lives on in these wonderful songs that we get so much joy from everyday.”

Hipgnosis raised £200 million in its IPO in the summer.

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