Moontrane Media Group, LLC participates in landmark copyright case granting rights back to artists for broadcasts of pre-1972 sound recordings

Flow & Eddie vs. Pandora Media

In 2018, on behalf of the legacies of late jazz legends, Dexter Gordon and Woody Shaw, Moontrane Media Group, LLC (founded by Woody Shaw III) participated in the Amicus Brief (legal testimony document) used in the appeal for the California Court of Appeals case Flow & Eddie vs. Pandora Media. The groundbreaking case helped restore the public performance right for digital broadcasts in favor of artists whose recordings were made prior to the advent of the 1972 sound recording copyright.

The California Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the reassigned rights, giving artists, estates, and heirs the rights to revenues generated through digital broadcasting media such as Sirius XM and Pandora. Moontrane Media Group, LLC is listed as one of the many esteemed artist representatives along with the estates of the Greatful Dead, Carole King, Dionne Warwick, Smokey Robinson, Frank Sinatra, Etta James, Judy Garland, Glenn Campbell, Jimi Hendrix, Ron Isley, Donny Hathaway, and many others.

The case of Floe & Eddie vs. Pandora established the protection of sound recordings made prior to 1972 through the public performance right, on behalf of artists and estates in the state of California (Dexter Gordon was a California native). The landmark case has resulted in a new Civil Code [§980(a)(2)] and serves as a victory for artists and copyright holders over the historical monopoly of broadcasters on (unpaid) public performance royalties.

Woody Shaw III (and Maxine Gordon, widow and biographer of Dexter Gordon) were referenced extensively in the Amicus Brief presented to the Supreme Court of California, and their quoted statements were used to close the final paragraph of the document.

Read the Official Supreme Court Document (See pages 15, 42, and the bibliography)

Also Read:
A Seismic Ruling On Pre-1972 Sound Recordings and State Copyright Law–Flo & Eddie v. Sirius XM Radio 

Woody Shaw III appointed as new Executive Director of The Mary Lou Williams Foundation, Inc.

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“Mary Lou Williams is perpetually contemporary. Her music retains a standard of quality that is timeless.

— Duke Ellington

Mary Lou Williams was a leading figure in jazz from the late 1930s onward who covered virtually all styles of the music and served as a mentor to countless musicians. Photos of Mary Lou during the 1940s show her alongside many of her then-students, including people like Thelonious Monk, Bud Powell, Tadd Dameron, Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, and Art Blakey. A native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Mary Lou came through the band of Andy Kirk, making her mark alongside such masters as Erroll Garner and Art Tatum.

Ms. Williams was a master pianist, an innovator, and a composer who left behind over 300 compositions in a myriad of styles from bebop to chorale music, classical pieces, funk tunes, modal tunes, the blues and beyond. She also started her own publishing company, Cecilia Music Co. and did extensive community work to assist musicians facing adversities during the 1950s. She was a formidable figure who bridged not only gender relations in music, but also defended the integrity of a great number of musicians. A matriarch in jazz if there ever was one. 

It is with great honor that I announce my recent appointment as the new Executive Director of The Mary Lou Williams Foundation. I look forward to working with the Foundation to ensure that Ms. Williams’ legacy and musical message are actively extended to the public and that her goals of social outreach and community engagement through music are successfully met for years to come.

Woody Louis Armstrong Shaw III, Executive Director
The Mary Lou Williams Foundation, Inc.


Woody Shaw III & Moontrane Media Group featured in New York Times (12.26.18)

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In a December 2018 article entitled “Jazz Wouldn’t Be The Same Without Them.”, the New York Times featured individuals who have played a pivotal role in the American jazz business, naming Woody Shaw III as a key figure in a long tradition of community leadership.

Excerpt from the New York Times:

“It was about community,” said Woody Shaw III, the recently appointed executive director of the Mary Lou Williams Foundation. . . “There was a natural sharing of information, and Williams found herself often in a kind of matriarchal position. These men were younger than she was, and needed guidance and intervention — whether it was through her creating her own businesses and organizations that specifically accommodated the needs of musicians, or allowing them to stay in her home when they were having difficulties.”

Through his work with the foundation and with his own company, Moontrane Media Group, Mr. Shaw has himself become a crusader for artists’ rights, helping musicians claim copyrights and royalties for their work. . . Mr. Shaw describes himself as an inheritor of a mantle worn by figures like Mary Lou Williams . . .

Mr. Shaw called himself an “amalgamation of these influences and values, over the generations.” He added: “I’m trying to help legendary musicians move into the 21st century, in terms of how they brand and market their legacies and tell their stories. And then there’s the question of, how do we help musicians gain a level of control over their economic and artistic destiny in this generation, a control that they didn’t have in the past?”

Read the full article here: