Madonna performs at Live Earth concert
Madonna performs at Live Earth concert - 


Lisa Napoli: Who needs the old-fashioned music biz? Not Madonna. Reports this morning that the Material Girl is about to sign a big, fat, juicy contract -- but not with a record label. Alisa Roth says it just may be the recording contract of the future.

Alisa Roth: Madonna has a message for her longtime record label, Warners Brothers Records:

Madonna: I don't want to be your prisoner, so baby, won't you set me free?

The single-monikered superstar is reportedly planning to sign a hundred-million dollar plus contract with concert promoter Live Nation. The deal would give the company three albums, and exclusive rights to promote concerts and market merchandise.

Steve Gordon is a music industry attorney. He says the deal is another dance step in the demise of the music industry as it once was.

Steve Gordon: It's more than a matter of contracts. It may show that an artist no longer needs a record company.

He said record companies traditionally offered artists distribution and marketing.

The deal certainly seems like a winner for Live Nation. Madonna turns 50 next year, and shows no signs of slowing down.

Madonna: And you can dance.

Her tour last year was the highest-grossing tour by a female artist ever.

In New York, I'm Alisa Roth for Marketplace.