Friday, June 6, 2008

It was only a matter of time.

Before our nation's politicians jumped on this shitwagon.

Ottawa should defend Hockey Night theme: Liberals
No breakthrough in licensing agreement talks between CBC, composer

Last Updated: Friday, June 6, 2008 | 4:48 PM ET
CBC Sports

According to Scott Moore, the executive director of CBC Sports, negotiations to keep the Hockey Night in Canada theme song are continuing. According to Scott Moore, the executive director of CBC Sports, negotiations to keep the Hockey Night in Canada theme song are continuing.

While all was quiet at the CBC Friday regarding the status of the Hockey Night in Canada theme song, talk heated up in the nation's capital.

Liberal Heritage critic Denis Coderre told reporters in Ottawa that Conservative Heritage Minister Josée Verner must defend one of Canada's most famous musical traditions and do everything possible to ensure the CBC continues to broadcast the theme.

"The Hockey Night in Canada theme is part of Canada's culture that goes beyond sport," said Coderre. "This is a great opportunity for the heritage minister to finally get off the bench by defending an important Canadian tradition."

Coderre's comments came on the heels of published reports Thursday that CBC Sports no longer wishes to enter into a new licensing agreement with Dolores Claman, the composer, owner and administrator of the HNIC theme tune.

Later Thursday, CBC Sports executive director Scott Moore told Newsworld that negotiations for a new licensing agreement are continuing with Copyright Music & Visuals, the Toronto agency representing Claman.

"We're prepared to do a deal, we're prepared to talk, but we're not prepared to do a deal at all costs," said Moore, adding his numerous calls to Copyright Music and Visuals had not been returned Thursday.

The CBC had nothing to report on the status of negotiations Friday.

"We have nothing to announce right now," said spokesman Chris Ball. "The status [of negotiations] is pretty much the same as it was [Thursday].

"I don't know what the plans [for discussion] are moving forward for the weekend yet. We're just basically in wait-and-see mode."

Ball was unable to confirm whether a Friday deadline of 5 p.m. ET for the CBC to respond to Copyright Music & Visuals' latest proposal remained in effect.

Copyright Music & Visuals said it had offered the public broadcaster a chance to renew its licence to use Claman's song — a staple on HNIC since 1968 — on terms that were "virtually identical to those that have existed for the past decade."

Previously, each use of the song cost the CBC about $500, the company said.

After the first two years of a new agreement, the rates would rise about 15 per cent, an increase Copyright Music & Visuals president John Ciccone called an industry standard.

A call made to Ciccone by was not returned Friday.

Moore said if an agreement can't be reached, the CBC would hold a nationwide contest for Canadians to submit a new theme song.

"This musical theme cannot be treated like any other song and certainly not reduced to a simple economic commodity," said Coderre. "If [Verner] wants to show that she cares about Canadian heritage, this is her chance.

"When it comes to arts and culture, this minister and this government have shown themselves to be minor leaguers at best."

Claman, who has written about 2,000 jingles over her career, is also credited with the Ontario theme A Place to Stand, which she co-wrote with her husband Richard Morris in 1967.

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