Radiohead Lead Featured Artists Coalition, Seek Greater Rights

October 6, 2008 11:08 AM ET

Radiohead, Pink Floyd's David Gilmour, the Pretenders' Chrissie Hynde and Iron Maiden are among the initial artists to sign up for and usher in the launch of the new Featured Artists Coalition. As the music industry continues to shift into the digital age, the Coalition seeks to protect the artist's rights over their own music. "We want all artists to have more control of their music and a much fairer share of the profits it generates in the digital age," a statement on the FAC's website reads. "We speak with one voice to help artists strike a new bargain with record companies, digital distributors and others, and are campaigning for specific changes." The FAC has also penned a six-step manifesto for "fair play," including increased compensation for commercial use of their music and changes to copyright law. Other members of the Coalition include Kate Nash, Roxy Music's Bryan Ferry, Gang of Four, Billy Bragg and the Verve.

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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