Kurt Cobain and Madonna, Together at Last! Wait–What?

Guy Oseary, Madonna’s manager (and U2’s, come to think of it), is now a co-manager of Kurt Cobain’s estate. He and Heather Parry, the president of Live Nation Film and Television, have signed a deal to look after all things Kurt. Courtney and Frances Bean will be tapped to oversee the use, exploitation and protection of Kurt’s name, likeness, image, artwork, digital items and licensing.

Quoth Oseary: “Heather and I are humbled to come on as co-managers to the Kurt Cobain to support Courtney Love and Frances Bean Cobain in protecting and celebrating a legacy that is important to us all.”

The deal supersedes an arrangement with Primary Wave, the company that licensed Kurt’s image for a pair of Converse sneakers that ended up annoying a lot of fans.

Billboard also mentions this:

Estate management, once a business that rarely made headlines, has increasingly become a music profit center, with iconic acts like Elvis Presley, Janis Joplin, The Ramones and Tupac Shakur seeing an extension in the life of their songs, images and legends. “Managing an estate is not the music business. It’s the pop-culture legacy business,” says Jeff Jampol, whose company Jam Inc. counts the estates of The Ramones, Joplin, The Doors and Otis Redding on its roster. “The music represents an entry point, but estate management is an entirely different field — the media we deal with are books, documentaries, retail, apparel, museum exhibits … It’s about reanimating the body of work and putting it forward into the conversation, then all revenue streams will follow.”

With more and more big-moneys celebrities to shuffle off this mortal coil in the coming years, this kind of estate management is a growth industry. If Oseary and Parry do their jobs right, expect to see Kurt’s name on Forbes’ list of the top-earning dead celebrities in one or two years.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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