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Kirk Franklin Claims 100% Of His Debut Album’s Publishing Rights Were Taken By His Label


Kirk Franklin is credited with revolutionizing the gospel music industry in America and the world at large. He debuted his album in 1993 with the album, “Kirk Franklin and The Family.” This saw the Texas native topping charts.

Despite the success of the album, it did not translate into financial success for the singer, contrary to what many people thought. Franklin made this known while speaking on “Club Shay Shay”.

According to him, the record deal he received for his first album left him without a percentage of the publishing revenue. He noted that the record label he signed with took 100 percent of his publishing, adding that the people who represented him did not know.

“My very first recording contract at 23 years old, the label I signed with, they took a hundred percent of my publishing,” Franklin shared. “The people that had represented me didn’t know; it was new for everyone.”

He noted that at the time he became a national and global sensation, the entertainment industry in Texas was not as  robust as it is today. Moreover, he didn’t know he needed an entertainment attorney. He said people at the time focused more on making music and not on the business decisions that needed to be made.

According to him, the attorney he had might have been a real estate attorney, making it difficult for him to reach out. 

“The attorney that I had was probably like a real estate attorney. I didn’t really know who to reach out to. This was 1993. I’m living in Texas. It’s not an entertainment space,” he said.

“That’s not the ecosystem that gospel music has always matriculated through,” he said. “And so we didn’t have a lot of professionals in our space to be able to try to gather information, and [the label] took a hundred percent of my publishing.”

Years down the line, Franklin has learned a crucial lesson from losing his  publishing revenue although he now receives publishing from the initial deal. “I’m old enough now where [according to] a lot of the copyright laws, they [the publishing] revert back to me,” Franklin explained. 

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