Sex Pistols’ Steve Jones, Paul Cook, and the estate of Sid Vicious have signed a new global publishing administration agreement with BMG. The deal includes their portion of the legendary rock band’s songwriting catalog.
Sex Pistols are among the most important and recognizable rock bands in history, and their legacy is felt across fashion, art, and society.
Sex Pistols left the British Establishment shaking when they exploded onto the music scene, kickstarting what later became known as punk. Young people ripped up not just their musical forebears but their social ones too, and Sex Pistols were the snarling, ferocious figurehead of the revolution.
They arrived in the US in 1978 for one of the most raucous and notorious tours of all time, leaving an indelible impression on American music and culture.
The band wrote and recorded a perfect, 40-minute album for the ages in 1977’s ‘Never Mind The Bollocks’ and from its artwork to the individual players, the attitude, and music – every bit of it influenced the world we live in today.
The album is frequently listed as one of the most influential of all time, with musicians from Joy Division / New Order to Kurt Cobain, Noel Gallagher, Green Day, to YUNGBLUD all citing them as key inspiration. And this was not just musically, they showed that anyone could create and many took the hint across fashion, art, design, and more.
Their artwork, created by the late artist Jamie Reid, are modern design classics, and the image for ‘God Save The Queen’ is one of the most instantly recognizable images of the late 20th century. Their fashion and style, whether their own creations or those associated with iconic designer Vivienne Westwood, continues to resonate through the generations.
Their 1977 single ‘God Save the Queen’ was banned by the BBC in the UK and appeared at Number 2 on the Official Singles chart, leading to accusations that the song was purposely kept off the top spot. For the only time in chart history, the track was listed as a blank, to avoid offence to the establishment.
The agreement with BMG includes key singles from the album including ‘Anarchy In The UK’, ‘God Save The Queen’, ‘Pretty Vacant’ and ‘Holidays In The Sun’, plus further originals and covers from ‘The Great Rock & Roll Swindle’ soundtrack album and some essential B- sides in ‘I Wanna Be Me’ (the “flipside” of ‘Anarchy…’), ‘Satellite’ (the b-side of ‘Holidays In The Sun’) and ‘Did You No Wrong’ (the “b” side of ‘God Save The Queen’).
Sex Pistols have been recognized as one of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time by Rolling Stone, recipients of the Mojo Icon Award from Mojo Magazine, and in 2006, all four original members plus Vicious, were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. They refused to attend the ceremony.
In 2022, the band were the subject of the acclaimed FX miniseries on Hulu, Pistol, which is based on guitarist Steve Jones autobiography Lonely Boy and follows the bands rise to prominence and notoriety.
Michael Howe, BMG’s VP, Music Publishing, said, “Steve, Paul, and Sid’s works with Sex Pistols are among the most important cultural and creative music of the last half-century. Their impact on society and the performing arts is orders of magnitude greater than the group’s incredibly brief lifespan and recorded output would suggest. The band’s influence resonates as deeply today as it did in 1977.”
Thomas Scherer, President, Repertoire & Marketing, Los Angeles and New York, said, “We are honored Steve Jones, Paul Cook, and Sid Vicious’ estate have chosen BMG to be the publishing home of their musical works with Sex Pistols – the crown jewels of a generation. Cash from chaos!”
Jones said, “Where’s my money?!”