So, remember how Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams lost that big case recently being sued by Marvin Gaye’s heirs over Blurred Lines? How it sounded too much like “Gotta Give it Up”?
Well, as much as I dislike the song Blurred Lines, I’ve read some very thoughtful analyses about why this ruling is a bad thing- THIS ONE is particularly good.
“The songs’ melodies are very different, so this most basic element of musical composition can’t be the basis for copyright liability. The same goes for the lyrics—there is no similarity whatsoever. Both songs do feature similar cowbell-centric percussion (more cowbell!). But the percussion isn’t part of the composition—it’s not in the sheet music—and so Williams and Thicke were free to copy it. The songs have broadly similar (albeit not identical) bass lines. But the “walking” bass line of the Gaye song is utterly typical of funk music”
Kal Raustiala and Christopher Jon Sprigman
This week, Mark Ronson added the writers of the 1980s tune, “Oops Upside Your Head” to the writers credited on Uptown Funk and now they are getting 17% of the royalties.
Well, here’s a fun one: what about Olly Murs’ “Dance with Me Tonight” and Meghan Trainor’s “Dear Future Husband” which both seem to rip off Dion’s “Runaroud Sue”? I wonder if anything will happen with these!
Take a listen to this little mashup!
Here are the 3 songs in their entirety:
(Photo by Pat David via Flickr)