Pop star Madonna is close to leaving her long-time Warner Bros. Records label for a wide-ranging $120 million deal with concert promotion firm Live Nation, a source familiar with the talks said Wednesday.
The story was first reported on the Wall Street Journal's Web site, which said Madonna would receive a mix of cash and stock in exchange for allowing Live Nation to distribute three studio albums, promote concert tours, sell merchandise and license her name.
Such a deal is virtually unprecedented, but may become more common as struggling record labels and other players in the music industry seek to shore up revenues by going into business with musical acts, rather than just taking fees for selling their albums or concert tickets.
A Live Nation spokesman declined comment. A source familiar with Warner confirmed the basic details of the report.
The 49-year-old singer has recorded for the Warner Music Group -owned label her entire career, stretching back to her 1983 self-titled debut album.
She still owes Warner Music a new studio CD and a greatest-hits package, a label spokeswoman said in August, when speculation of a tie-up with Live Nation first surfaced. Her last album, "Confessions on a Dance Floor," came out in 2005.