The Music Modernization Act — a copyright reform bill enthusiastically labeled as “historic” by music industry leaders that blazed its way through Congress this summer — is set to be signed into law by President Trump on Thursday, with artists like Kanye West and Kid Rock slated to attend the ceremony.
Intended to update copyright law for the digital (and specifically streaming) era, the MMA in the form it’s being passed will accomplish three key things: making sure songwriters and artists receive royalties on songs recorded before 1972; allocating royalties for music producers; and updating licensing and royalty rules for streaming services to pay rights-holders in a more streamlined fashion, primarily by setting up an independent entity that will handle much of the work. Under the act, music creators will be paid more and will have a more secure way of collecting all that they’re due.
The New York Times reported earlier this week that a meeting had been scheduled between Kanye West, Trump and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner with an undisclosed agenda. West has been one of Trump’s most high-profile musician supporters, meeting with him at Trump Tower shortly after his election in December 2016 and most recently wearing a “Make America Great Again” cap on his appearance last month on Saturday Night Live. (Ye also floated the idea on Twitter of one day running for president himself.) Kid Rock publicly supported Trump in his 2016 presidential campaign.
Recording Academy president Neil Portnow and Recording Industry Association of America president Mitch Glazier will also also be present for the signing of the legislation, which is scheduled for 11:45 E.T. at the White House.