The Twitterverse was afire the other night with the juicy, made-for-internet headline that Hasbro, the massive toy company responsible for Transformers, Monopoly, Nerf, My Little Pony, Mr. Potato Head, Twister, G.I. Joe and The Power Rangers, among hundreds of other iconic brands, had acquired Death Row Records (Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Tupac, etc.), one of the most controversial and violent rap labels of all time.
That in itself is pretty funny — and true — but it only tells part of the story. What actually happened was that Hasbro acquired Entertainment One (eOne), known in metal circles as a major player in the label game but to most others as a massive television, music, distribution and media company with thousands of employees worldwide. eOne owns the right to the Death Row catalogue, and those rights now belong to Hasbro. The deal is reportedly worth $4 billion, with eOne’s ownership of the lucrative Peppa Pig and PJ Masks children’s television franchises a primary motivator.
That means the following artists, all of whom have released at least one record via eOne, will be receiving their next royalty check from the same company that manufactures Tonka trucks: Opeth, In Flames, Hatebreed, High on Fire, Crowbar, Kittie, Throwdown, Black Label Society, Chimaira, Winds of Plague, Within the Ruins, The Contortionist, Ace Frehley, Dope, Whores, Avatar and countless others. Add the Wu-Tang Clan, DJ Khaled, Fat Joe, Juvenline, Warren G and Sean Kingston to that list, too.
Just think of all the cross-promotional opportunities that are now available under one roof! A special edition My Little Pony set featuring Kirk Windstein atop a unicorn. Power Rangers renditions of Zakk Wylde and the RZA. Sexy Time Twister featuring Mikael Akerfeldt. The possibilities are endless! And now all it takes is a quick water cooler chat between Karen and Scott to get it done. Huzzah!