A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

News about Leonard Cohen and his work, press, radio & TV programs etc.
bene449
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bene449 » Fri Jan 14, 2011 5:28 pm

Wendy,

How about an email from them which goes along the lines of "Dear Vince, thank you for your email and we will get back to you". Am I asking too much?

Pironi, this is going to shock you but you can, for a small price, have these reels coverted to dvd. The starting bid is £2000, and suppose it goes for £5000. Do you feel that it is too much? Ok, let me give you a scenario.
A Company buys the Concert in Jerusalem reel for £5000, and gets permission to release it. They have it transferred to dvd and spend another £50,000 to pay for packaging, advertising etc. Through Amazon etc they sell 100,000 albums (forget the timeframe needed to achieve this) at a price of £12 each. The profit is £5 per album, wholesale.
The total profit for 100,000 albums is then £500,000, excluding any costs. Do you feel that the reel is still to expensive at £5000?

The above numbers are simplistic and off the top of my head, but they show what these reels are worth to a proper organisation, or even to a bootlegger. I have not taken things into consideration like paying royalties for permission to use these reels for gain.
Last edited by bene449 on Fri Jan 14, 2011 7:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby carlowmike » Fri Jan 14, 2011 5:43 pm

It is clearly stated under (G)
g. Purchase of any of these reels does not give any rights to reproduce any of the content. The buyer only purchases ownership of the reel and he/she has the right to sell on the reel at any time he/she wishes.
so the following business suggestion from bene449 does not make sense :!:
Pironi, this is going to shock you but you can, for a small price, have these reels coverted to dvd. The starting bid is £2000, and suppose it goes for £5000. Do you feel that it is too much? Ok, let me give you a scenario.
A Company buys the Concert in Jerusalem reel for £5000, and gets permission to release it. They have it transferred to dvd and spend another £50,000 to pay for packaging, advertising etc. Through Amazon etc they sell 100,000 albums (forget the timeframe needed to achieve this) at a price of £12 each. The profit is £5 per album, wholesale.
The total profit for 100,000 albums is then £500,000. Do you feel that the reel is still to expensive at £5000?
who gives the "permission" ?
how much does the "permission" cost ?
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bene449
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bene449 » Fri Jan 14, 2011 7:53 pm

Please read my post again. I did say that you would have to get permission, and depending on the deal, you would have to pay royalties. I also said this was a simplistic view, just to show that these reels are worth a lot of money, to the right person.

To clarify, the purchase of the reels does not authorise you to copy any of the content, or distribute any of the content. Should you wish to do anything like this, you would have to get permission from the appropriate body. I do not want to get into a conversation about who owns the content, unless I am talking to a serious buyer.
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bridger15 » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:02 pm

A summary was posted today by "raw material a daily newsblast for bloggers"
http://therawmaterials.wordpress.com/20 ... f-history/
Leonard Cohen fans get the chance to buy a piece of history
Bird on a Wire: Going for a Song.

At midnight on 23rd January 2011 legendary rock and roll manager and lawyer Steven Machat will put the 294 reels of original raw footage of the epic Leonard Cohen film ‘Bird on a Wire’ up for sale to Cohen fans and investors.

Steven Machat has negotiated business deals for the likes of Ozzy Osbourne, ELO, Snoop Dogg and Peter Gabriel in his stellar career but this sale represents something deeply personal.

Machat explains ‘,I am selling the Leonard Cohen Bird On A Wire movie reels, as I believe the fans should own them.

The reels were returned to me by Cohen when he and I settled our differences that existed when he and my Dad’s secretary left our offices with all the books and records concerning the Machat and Machat past involvement with Leonard Cohen.

To get the film back, I gave up substantial claims of his sale of copyrights that he did not solely own and had no right selling without contact with Machat and Machat. Upon selling the rights, he also kept all the proceeds.


I got the film back. The same reels Cohen told the world was lost when asked. And many have asked over the years. Leonard offered me this film as he knew it was mine as well as he knew he was wrong in not paying Machat and Machat for our percentage owed for the copyright sale. My specific purpose for releasing the film was to give my Dad back his legacy.

Dad was Cohen’s lawyer, manager and protector for twenty years, which ended when Dad died. Dad financed this film for he saw that Cohen was a worthy artist and he knew this film would one day be a historic record of the young Cohen.

When Cohen and I settled and he gave me back what was mine, he neglected to give me the edited version of the film my father paid for. He simply gave me the reels of raw footage.


He never thought I could redo the film. But I loved my father and would not let Cohen’s ruse stop me. I found the original Director, Tony Palmer who found the original soundtrack for Bird On A Wire in his archives. With this soundtrack and absolute perseverance, the artistic integrity of the film was put back together and commercially released. This remake cost in excess of 100,000 dollars.

I did this solely for Dad and the legacy that Cohen stole.’

The reels of film footage are in individual cans and each one has a Certificate of Authentication signed by Tony Palmer and Steven Machat. Each is different: some cans contain just audio or picture footage and some both (intended to be played together). Finally some contain trims of film.
Included amongst the footage there are home movies of Leonard Cohen and his family – including footage of the artist as a young boy, playing with his parents.

The cost of each roll containing picture footage and trim is £1000 and they will go on sale for one month through http://www.leonardcohencafe.co.uk.

Once a collector chooses to make a purchase they will be entered into a lottery draw to decide which of the cans they will be allocated.

Some of the rolls are extremely rare and have been described as ‘a bootlegger’s dream’ as they include original sound recordings of Cohen’s concerts in Jerusalem, Stockholm, Dublin, Paris and at the Royal Albert Hall. These rolls can be purchased independently from http://www.leonardcohencafe.co.uk.

-ends-

For more information, contact Firgas, Mark or Peter at Quite Great on 01233410000 or via email on publicity2@quitegreat.co.uk. Steven Machat is available for interviews and we have images of the reels.

Notes

■Full transcript of Steven Machat’s open letter explaining his descision is available to accompany this release. Please quote Steven Machat accordingly.
■Purchase of any of these reels does not give any rights to reproduce any of the content. The buyer only purchases ownership of the reel and he/she has the right to sell on the reel at any time he/she wishes.The cost of the reels will be £1000 each and £30 for postage/insurance. They will be sold through http://www.leonardcohencafe.co.uk , the biggest retailer of Leonard Cohen items on the internet. Collectors can pay the £1000 or, if they prefer, 10 months at £100 per month (plus an admin charge of £50). There is no limit to how many reels a collector can purchase. All details regarding sales logistics can be found at http://www.leonardcohencafe.co.uk.
■To read more about Steven’s incredible life read (for example) http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-enter ... 64965.html
■Steven is the author of ‘Gods, Gangsters and Honour’ available through Amazon and as a radio broadcast with music on itunes and Kindle
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sirius
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby sirius » Sat Jan 22, 2011 5:29 pm

If these reels of film are of such historical importance why doesn't Leonard Cohen purchase them in their entirety.

Have they been offered to him?


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bene449
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bene449 » Sat Jan 22, 2011 6:03 pm

I think the collection is too big for any institution as they take up half a garage.
For Sony or Leonard, these reels are a license to print money. They could use the reels to bring out new dvds or downloads e.g. the concerts in Jerusalem, Dublin, Paris etc. There are also several reels of home movies, which may be of importance to Leonard or his family.
Leonard and his management are aware of the sale.
The sale starts tomorrow and the publicity wheel has now started. It is just about to hit Canada and USA, in the next week or so.
Should you wish to discuss anything about these reels etc, send me your phone number to vince@leonardcohencafe.co.uk

Have a nice weekend.
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Mabeanie1
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby Mabeanie1 » Sat Jan 22, 2011 7:16 pm

bene449 wrote:For Sony or Leonard, these reels are a license to print money. They could use the reels to bring out new dvds or downloads e.g. the concerts in Jerusalem, Dublin, Paris etc. There are also several reels of home movies, which may be of importance to Leonard or his family.
Leonard and his management are aware of the sale.
The sale starts tomorrow and the publicity wheel has now started.
If Leonard had wanted the reels, I daresay he would not have handed them to Steve Machat in the first place. Similarly if he had wanted to use them as "a license to print money" which he did NOT, even at a time when he could really have done with a licence to print money.

One thing is puzzling me. If Steve Machat genuinely believes that the reels should be owned by the fans as he says in the publicity material then why:

1. Is he charging £1,000 per reel - a price which is beyond the reasonable reach of many if not most fans?
2. Has he singled out the "best" reels for separate sale at premium prices?
3. Has he set in motion a substantial publicity machine to advertise the sale?

Hmm.

Wendy
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bridger15
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bridger15 » Sat Jan 22, 2011 7:44 pm

Interesting article today with much of what we've read before.

http://www.hackneygazette.co.uk/news/sh ... e_1_781134

It includes one additional Machat quote I find interesting.
The sale of the reels, priced at £1,000 each, marks the final chapter in a dispute between US-born Machat, 58, and his former client Cohen over the footage.

He said: “These reels are historical, and since Cohen himself didn’t put them into a museum, I feel the rightful place is with his fans who so adore his message.”
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby Mabeanie1 » Sat Jan 22, 2011 7:51 pm

Thanks for the link Arlene.

I think it's worth quoting these two lines together since they seem to give a genuine insight in to Mr Machat's thinking on the sale (emphasis mine):

"These reels are historical, and since Cohen himself didn’t put them into a museum, I feel the rightful place is with his fans who so adore his message.”

“I am selling this for money. I am selling this so those who worship and adore the artist can have something to hold and own as their own.”

W
bene449
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bene449 » Sat Jan 22, 2011 8:22 pm

Malbeanie,

I posted a lengthy reply to your post but somehow it got deleted by this site and i don't have the time to rewrite it. Basically, LC only gave the reels to Steve as he owed Steve several million dollars (after pretending for years that he didn't know where the reels were). LC then pretended that he hadn't authorised the release of the dvd............then, embarrassingly remembered he had authorised the showing, at the world premiere, at the Leonard Cohen event in Krakow. Many people here will remember that night, because they gave a standing ovation. Maybe, it's just old age! I am 54 and am always forgetting things, like the 294 reels in my loft. lol.
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bene449 » Sat Jan 22, 2011 8:32 pm

Thanks, Malbeanie.

Steve has never bothered about the money. The money he is charging for these reels goes to various groups, and he will be lucky to break even on his investment. He wanted to release this dvd as a tribute to his father. Wouldn't any loving son do the same? I don't know how many of you live near London, but i am sure i could arrange some sort of meeting between you and Steve.
He is a genuine person, and all this happened because of his interest in Buddhism. He went to Leonard's house to discuss Buddhism and Leonard panicked because he thought Steve had come for the millions that LC owed him. That was why LC gave him the reels (after years of pretending that he didn't have them) in exchange for Steve forgetting about the money.

Steve has not agreed to any kind of meeting with you but he is such a generous person, that I know he would not say "no". So, if anyone wants to share a few drinks with Steven Machat and myself, in London, please put your details here or email me on vince@leonardcohencafe.co.uk
You should read his book first, make notes of anything you don't agree with, and ask him at the meet. I can't get fairer than that, can I?
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bridger15 » Sat Jan 22, 2011 8:50 pm

Let us also not forget an important item in the "RAW MATERIAL" article above,
When Cohen and I settled and he gave me back what was mine, he neglected to give me the edited version of the film my father paid for. He simply gave me the reels of raw footage.
We've been given to understand that LC and Tony Palmer do not like that edited film and that the BBC passed on its intial commitment after viewing it. However, I happen to like several clips that I have seen only on Youtube that did not make it into the latest iteration. (Yes, I was in Krakow and was present at the premiere.) Personally, I would like to see that first edited version in its entirety on a decent screen. I feel that is also part of LC history and should be avalable to his fans and everyone else for that matter.

@Joe Way, Madison 2012
How about a screening of the "original" edited BOTW at the Leonard Cohen Madison Event 2012.
Now that should engender a spirited compare and contrast discussion.

---Arlene
Last edited by bridger15 on Sat Jan 22, 2011 8:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby neo » Sat Jan 22, 2011 8:56 pm

A meeting with Mr Machat is imho much more interesting than the sale of those reels. His book is an interesting read and I'm sure he has some interesting stories about the music business to tell.
I won't be able to travel to London, but I hope anyone living nearby will be grabbing that chance.
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bene449
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Re: A part of history for sale (Bird on a Wire)

Postby bene449 » Sat Jan 22, 2011 9:27 pm

Neo,
thank you for that and sorry you can't attend.

As for the edited version of BOAW, Steve Machat doesn't think it exists. A collector i know did have a reel of BOAW, which was shown on tv, which someone recorded and this was used by Tony Palmer to help him reconstruct the damaged film.

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