Film Musicians Residuals Fund Collects Record $100 Million; Many Stars Owed Money


The record industry might be tanking, but the music industry is thriving within the film and TV business. Employer contributions to a residuals fund for musicians whose work is heard on the big and small screens hit a record $100 million last year, according to the latest report from the Film Musicians Secondary Markets Fund.

Last year, the fund distributed more than $81 million to 17,000-plus musicians but is holding more than $5 million in unclaimed checks for more than 6,000 musicians for whom the fund has no current address or contract information. They iinclude Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Elton John, Aretha Franklin, Paul Simon, James Taylor, Axl Rose, Tony Bennett, Cyndi Lauper, Nelly Furtado, Blake Shelton, Kanye West, Annie Lennox, Jeff Beck, Ronnie Spector, Brian Eno, Talking Heads’ Tina Weymouth, Peter Gabriel, the Monkees’ Michael Nesmith, Dave Clark, Johnny Depp, Jared Leto and all three Hanson brothers – Taylor, Zac and Isaac.

Prince REX/Shutterstock

The estates of many late stars also are owed money, including, Prince, Michael Jackson, David Bowie, Janice Joplin, James Brown, John Coltrane, Marvin Gaye, Lou Reed, Ray Charles, B.B. King, Luther Vandross and at least three who died young in airplane or helicopter crashes: Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jim Croce and Glenn Miller.

Here’s the names of all musicians who are owed money is here.

Established in 1972 by agreement between the American Federation of Musicians and management’s AMPTP, the fund receives contributions for musicians’ residuals when a film, TV show or new media program that played their music moves from its primary market to a secondary market. The residuals usually amount to less than 1% of the distributor’s gross receipts.

Over the past 10 years, the fund has collected more than $860 million, rising nearly every year since the Great Recession. That trend, said Kim Roberts Hedgpeth, the fund’s executive director, “shows a growth of consumer purchasing of the film and television programs produced under the AFM agreement.”

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