Kanye West and Kid Rock joined President Donald Trump at the White House as he signed the Music Modernization Act. However, West's 10-minute long rant in the Oval Office overshadowed the bill signing.
As Billboard explains, the act created a mechanical license and system to administer it, and forces digital and satellite radio to pay royalties on pre-1972 master recordings to the artists and their labels. It also sets a procedure for SoundExchange to pay producers and engineers for recordings. The bill was unanimously passed by the House of Representatives and Senate before landing on Trump's desk.
"The Music Modernization Act closes loopholes in our digital royalties laws to ensure that songwriters, artists and producers receive fair payment for licensing of music," Trump said before signing the act into law, reports Billboard. "I've been reading about this for many years and never thought I'd be involved in it, but I got involved in it. They were treated very unfairly. They're not going to be treated unfairly anymore."
West joined Trump later in the Oval Office, but was not at the bill signing ceremony. Instead, the president was surrounded by Kid Rock, Beach Boys singer Mike Love, country singers Craid Morgan and John Rick, Christian rock group MercyMe, guitarist Jeff "Skunk" Baxter and Sam & Dave singer Sam Moore.
The bill was also praised by music executives at the event, including Neil Portnow, the CEO and president of the Recording Academy, which presents the Grammys.
"As we celebrate the harmony and unity that got us here, we applaud the efforts of the thousands of performers, songwriters, and studio professionals who rallied for historic change to ensure all music creators are compensated fairly when their work is used by digital and satellite music services," Portnow said in a statement. "We thank the members of Congress who championed this issue throughout the past several years to bring music law into the 21st century."
While this marked a radical change in the music business, West's appearance in the Oval Office, grabbed all the attention. The rapper wore the "Make America Great Again" hat he donned during Saturday Night Live late last month.
"He may not have expected to have a crazy motherf– like Kanye West run up and support but best believe we are going to make America great," West said during his rant. At another point, West said the red hat made him feel like Superman.0comments
"You know, they tried to scare me to not wear this hat," West told the president, reports CBS News. "But this hat it gives me, it gives me power in a way. You know, my dad and my mom separated, so I didn't have a lot of male energy in my home. And also, I'm married to a family that um, you know, not a lot of male energy going on, it's beautiful though."
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