Primary Wave Acquires Publishing and Recording Rights from Styx Frontman Dennis DeYoung

Primary Wave Dennis DeYoung
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Primary Wave Dennis DeYoung
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Photo Credit: DDYweb / CC by 3.0

Primary Wave Music has acquired the publishing and recording rights of Styx frontman Dennis DeYoung, including hits like ‘Mr. Roboto,’ ‘Babe,’ and ‘Come Sail Away.’

Leading independent publisher Primary Wave has partnered with Styx founding member and frontman Dennis DeYoung. The deal sees the publisher acquire the music publishing and recording rights for a majority of recordings featuring DeYoung.

As one of Styx’s songwriters, Dennis DeYoung wrote seven of the band’s eight Top 10 Billboard singles. The new Primary Wave partnership will encompass many of those hits, including “Babe,” “Come Sail Away,” “Lady,” and “The Best of Times.”

“I’m truly honored to be a Primary Wave artist,” said DeYoung. “Being in the company of all these great songwriters and musicians is absolutely incredible. Thanks to Larry (Mestel) and the entire Primary Wave team.”

“We couldn’t be happier to welcome Dennis into the Primary Wave family,” said Larry Mestel, CEO and founder of Primary Wave Music. “His songs were a soundtrack to so many lives, and we look forward to creating new opportunities for those songs in the future. Dennis is truly a legendary artist.”

Terms of the deal include granting DeYoung access to Primary Wave’s marketing team and publishing infrastructure, encompassing digital strategy, licensing, sync opportunities, and film/TV production.

During Dennis DeYoung’s time with Styx, the band sold over 30 million albums, with four consecutive triple-platinum releases. An avid Beatles fan, Dennis’ strong belief in the power of song is evidenced throughout the Styx catalog with hits like “Renegade,” “Boat on the River,” “Mr. Roboto,” “The Best of Times,” and “Come Sail Away.”

In the ’80s, DeYoung recorded two solo albums for A&M Records and another for MCA. His first solo album, “Desert Moon,” went gold in Canada. Styx returned from a six-year hiatus to record “Edge of the Century,” which included the DeYoung-penned Top 3 hit “Show Me the Way.”

His tenure with Styx would ultimately end in 1999 after 27 years, after which DeYoung formed his own band and toured almost continuously under the banner of Dennis DeYoung and the Music of Styx. That project would last until the COVID pandemic in 2020 forced him to cancel a 60-city tour, but DeYoung plans to return to touring in 2024.