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Six Artists Accused of Plagiarism!

November 13, 2013

I think there’s one thing we CAN all agree on: there are only twelve notes in the musical scale. Though there’s seemingly endless ways to arrange them in a unique fashion-- there’s bound to be overlap from time to time. However, sometimes the overlap is a little too uncanny. When Katy Perry released her single “Roar” in August, it was immediately noted how eerily similar the track was to the Sara Bareilles song “Brave” (which was co-written by Jack Antonoff from the band .fun).  Perry and her co-writers (Dr. Luke, Max Martin, Bonnie McKee, and Cirkut) have remained mostly mum on the subject, while Bareilles is obviously pleased as punch to have a sudden burst of attention lavished on her song, which according to Wikipedia was recorded in 2011 though not released until this year, thus (allegedly) having the honor of being the “original.” This kind of thing seems to happen a lot in the pop world, where football sized teams of songwriters get their paws all over a tune—but guess what? It also happens in the world of rock.

Today in Andy’s Corner, we’re looking at some rock stars who got the smack down for plagiarism and saw some form of legal action as a result. Typically, artists reach an out-of-court settlement to resolve plagiarism issues—sometimes paying a lump sum OR adding the plaintiff to the song’s credits. Sometimes it's an accident, sometimes it's intentional-- but it's always messy. Listen below and tell us what you think in the comments!

 

Joe Satriani v. Coldplay

Satch sued the lads in Coldplay in 2008 for lifting “substantial original portions” of his song “If I Could Fly” for use in their hit “Vida La Vida.” The matter was settled out of court in an undisclosed agreement between both parties in which Coldplay did not have to admit any wrongdoing.

 

 

Hollies v. Radiohead

Depending on which corner of the internet you are reading, Radiohead either stole this progression and got caught OR shared writing credits straight from the start. In any case, the verses for “Creep” are lifted directly from the classic Hollies tune “The Air That I Breathe,”meaning that the Hollies’ Mike Hazelwood and Albert Hammond (father of the Strokes’ Albert Hammond Jr) now share writing credits with Thom Yorke on the tune.

 

 

 

 

 

Willie Dixon v. Led Zeppelin

Though there’s no question about Zep’s talent or abilities to write amazing music, they did get pinched back in the day for their classic hit “Whole Lotta Love” having perhaps a little too much in common with Willie Dixon’s “You Need Love,” which was recorded by Muddy Waters. The matter was settled in ’85, out of court but in Dixon’s favor.

 

 

 

Chuck Berry v. THE WORLD!!!!

Berry went after not one but two huge bands: the Beach Boys AND the Beatles.  The Beach Boys’ first major hit “Surfin’ in the USA” was purportedly plagiarized from Berry’s “Sweet Little Sixteen.” The lawsuit in this case granted Berry writing credit and royalties from the record. Meanwhile, Berry’s “You Can’t Catch Me” is undeniably the basis for the melody of the verses in “Come Together,” the legal wrangling over which resulted in John Lennon agreeing to record a few songs owned by music publisher Morris Levy and another messy lawsuit between Levy and Lennon. Moral of the story? Don’t mess with Chuck Berry.

 

 

 

The Song Catalog of John Fogerty v. John Fogerty

Of course, everyone’s favorite plagiarism story involves that one time that John Fogerty got sued by Creedence Clearwater Revival’s management because after he left CCR, Fogerty’s solo songs sounded too much like… John Fogerty! You can’t make this stuff up. Fogerty won the lawsuit but had a little trouble on his hands in the form of a defamation charge after he wrote a song about the manager who sued him. Good for you, John—small price to pay for a little deserved finger-wagging.

 

 

Comments

  1. Polvo says:

    Another famous example: Nirvana’s “Come As You Are” which is a rip-off of Killing Joke’s “Eighties,” which *might* also be a rip-off of The Damned’s “Life Goes On.”

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 12:48 pm
  2. Andy says:

    Sugar’s “A good Idea” from The Pixies “Debaser”.  I love them both, so no complaints here.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 12:55 pm
  3. GrumpyEye says:

    john mayer - waiting on a world to change
    v
    curtis mayfield - people get ready

    and
    John Mayer - You’re No One ‘Til Someone Lets You Down
    v
    Ernest Tubb - Walking the Floor Over You

    don’t get me wrong, I love Mayer, but he is stealing like there’s no tomorrow!

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 12:57 pm
  4. EncinoMan says:

    Flaming Lips’ ‘Fight Test’ - Cat Stevens ‘Father and Son’

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:04 pm
  5. LT says:

    George Harrison’s ” My Sweet Lord”  was almost note for note rip off of Ronnie Mack’s “He’s so Fine”  he lost that one.
    Bee Gees “How Deep is your love” was mined from a previously unknown writer right out of the library of congress -they got caught too if I remember….

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:06 pm
  6. bryan says:

    Zeppelin’s “borrowed” all sorts of stuff… don’t have as much reverence for them these days after knowing how much they pilfered from others.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:09 pm
  7. murray says:

    I believe Lead Belly wrote House of the rising sun in the 30s and when the Animals recorded it Parsons name appeared on the label as having wrote it and even cut the rest of the animals out , his excuse was there was not enough room on the label to include them , and just recently Men at work got sued for Land down under the complainant said the flute part sounded too much like his Skippy the bush Kangaroo , Men at work lost the case , personally I was on Men at works side , funny old world.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:15 pm
  8. tushambi says:

    If Senator Rand Paul can steal other peoples words and lie about it, and thinks he is Presidential material, I guess a musician might think it might be O.K. also.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:15 pm
  9. Andy says:

    C’mon, man!  No political crap!  Stay on point!

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:18 pm
  10. Rick says:

    In a 1980 Musician magazine interview, Steely Dan co-founders Donald Fagen and Walter Becker got themselves into a bit of hot water with a sarcastic answer to a question about the title track to their new LP, Gaucho. Confronted with the overwhelming musical similarities between their song and a half-decade old tune called “Long As You Know You’re Living Yours” by jazz pianist Keith Jarrett, the ironic songwriters quipped, dismissively: “We’re the robber-barons of rock and roll.” Fans of Steely Dan might have been charmed by Fagen and Becker’s usual flair for the wisecrack, but Jarrett wasn’t amused. He sued the songwriters for creative theft, and successfully earned himself a writing credit for “Gaucho.”

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:20 pm
  11. Wes says:

    I always felt Hank Jr’s “Countryboy Can Survive” is similar to Cats in The Cradle. Josh Grobin’s “You Raise Me Up” sounds a lot like “Danny Boy.” Surprised you didn’t mention Billy Gibbons and John Lee Hooker.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:21 pm
  12. Holden Litgo says:

    The folk and blues tradition - and all music derived from it - relies and is built upon “borrowing” or recycling and re-imagining melodies, progressions and often even lyric passages. Suing or claiming rights infringement should be confined to those listeners who pirate music. Those are the real thieves: Those who are not artists but steal and share without payment out of a sense of entitlement.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:22 pm
  13. Rick says:

    Ray Parker Jr. “Ghostbusters Theme”  vs. Huey Lewis and the News “I Want A New Drug”  I think Huey won this battle…

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:25 pm
  14. Abbacus says:

    Then there’s the sad account of the guy who wrote the song: “Way Down Upon The Swanee River.”
    He committed suicide in a cheap hotel room in a strange town far from home. The song was found scribbled on a piece of well-wrinkled paper in his pocket. The song was published and became quite popular. Everyone made money off the song but him.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:27 pm
  15. Michelle Rose says:

    I may be one of the very few that actually saw the video for “Vanz Can’t Dance”, the tune that JC Fogerty wrote in honor of (giggle) CCR’s tight-fisted (and from all accounts, vile-tempered) manager Saul Zaenz. It was truly cool. Will Vinton’s Claymation Studios did the animation (which was totally awesome) and portrayed “Vanz” as a shape-shifting pig. The chorus: “Vanz can’t dance but he’ll steal your money” was incredibly catchy. I think it played on MTV for about three days before it was pulled. Too bad. Great song/awesome video.

    John had to jump through a lot of legal hoops before he was allowed to play his own songs (which included CCR tunes) live in concert. When Zaenz sued him, he actually took his guitar into court with him and showed the judge how certain chord structures and licks were part of his style and how they derived from other artist’s work. Truly cool: giving the judge a guitar lesson in court.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:27 pm
  16. Leif says:

    Jet,  ripped off everyone for pretty much every song they ever did (see, I didn’t say wrote)
    It became so apparent, that when they were supposed to be writing the second album, it was joked that they were shopping at HMV.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:30 pm
  17. Phrostbyte says:

    Every poet is a thief

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:36 pm
  18. Rubber Toe says:

    What about the guitar solo that gets passed around like an Olympic Torch? 

    Stone Gossard “Alive”
    V
    Ace Frehley “She”
    V
    Robbie Kruger ” Five to One”

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:37 pm
  19. MrRocknRoll says:

    Deep Purple’s “Black Night” vs Blues Magoos’s “(We Ain’t Got) Nothin’ Yet”

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:39 pm
  20. Dave says:

    The beginning of the guitar solos at the end of Alive by Pearl Jam is nearly note-for-note the guitar solo at the end of Starship Trooper by Yes. Ditto for The Chain by Fleetwood Mac and Otherside by Red Hot Chili Peppers.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:39 pm
  21. Jim Gross says:

    As stated in the article above, you can’t deny the fact that there are only 12 musical notes and it’s inevitible that after thousands of years of music…there’s going to be some overlap. You can only do so much and you can only go so far. If you start putting notes and chords together that are “dischordant” that’s just what the resulting ‘music’ will sound like…“dischordant” and no longer pleasing to the ears. When it’s no longer pleasing to the ears, it’s no longer music. Maybe that’s why so many big name “Rock” artists claim that there is no place else for the music to progress, that it cannot evolve further, basically because everything’s all ready been done.
      Here’s a great example that I urge everyone to check out. Yes, it’s put out by an Australian Comedy Troupe, and while it is a comedy routine, it makes a very VALID point that sits very well with this article. It’s on YouTube-type in your searchbar….“AXIS OF AWESOME-FOUR CHORD SONGS (WITH TITLES)”.  It’s a medley of twenty or thirty songs, that I gaurantee all of you will recognize that all use the same four chord progression-check it out….

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:42 pm
  22. James says:

    There is nothing new under the sun…it just occurred to me the other day that Lou Reed’s “Walk on the Wild Side,” reminds me of Paul McCartney’s “Get Back.”  But not enough resemblance to stir Sir Paul to litigation because it is well known that Paul and John leaned heavily on those who preceded them…chalk it up to tricks of the trade and in a way, a tribute…and hey’ there are only what, 15-16 notes in a scale and a finite combination of chords that our ears will tolerate…so lighten up!  I mean I’m surprised Tin Tin, of “Toast and Marmalade for Tea” didn’t get their knickers in a twist over Jigsaw’s “SkyHigh.”

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:45 pm
  23. christo mesoloras says:

    I heard Prince to with The Most beautiful girlin the world with some band from europe.i don’t believe it

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:52 pm
  24. Art D says:

    Back in the day when I played in a band we wrote original material songs and played locally,
    Some fans told us a couple of songs sounded like other tunes. 
    We had no clue but it was true they sound alot like the other tunes, it was unintentional. 
    We did not even know the songs.  Sometimes you hear things maybe on the radio or listening to friends records then years later they come out in music you believe to be original. 
    We stopped playing those tunes we never got recorded so no harm no foul,  But really it can happen completely accidentally.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 1:59 pm
  25. Franc says:

    “House Of The Rising Sun” is truly a traditional tune, first recorded in 1934, and covered by zillions of artists over the years. The story I heard about the Animals version was that the arrangement was supposed to be credited to the whole band, but only Rod Price (organ) actually received the credit, for whatever reason.

    Led Zeppelin, OTOH, went through the Chess and Cobra records back catalog for most of their first 2 albums- “I Can’t Quit You Baby” was a direct lift of Otis Rush, “How Many More Times” and “The Lemon Song” are Howlin Wolf tunes (the latter is better known as Killing Floor) “You Shook Me” from Muddy Waters, “Dazed And Confused” was Jake Holmes, and Bring It On Home from Willie Dixon (at least he got some credit for that one!). Funny thing is, I like LZ’s original material from that period…

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:01 pm
  26. Alex says:

    the one that pisses me off the most is the fact that the main theme of phantom to the opera is copied from Pink Floyd’s Echoes!! goddamn you, Andrew Lloyd Webber!

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:01 pm
  27. Dave says:

    Rose.

    I saw that video once too! Never knew the significance of it, didn’t care about Fogerty at the time.
    If you want to let the genie out of the bottle, start suing over guitar solos! Don’t think the courts will go for it though.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:05 pm
  28. Andy says:

    “The Chain” and “Otherside”?  I don’t hear it.  I’ll have to go listen to them back to back.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:10 pm
  29. Michael Sinks says:

    It’s everywhere in music, just say ‘adapted by’ and you’re covered. So many blues songs got ripped off it ain’t funny. Of course lots of those old tunes were handed down from one generation to another and changed a little every time they were played. No problem till somebody ain’t gettin’ paid that thinks they should. More power to em if they can get it.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:11 pm
  30. Roberto says:

    The Black Keys’ “Everlasting Light” vs. T-Rex’s “Mambo Sun”

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:11 pm
  31. Bud says:

    “Lime in the Coconut” is the same song as Love and Rockets “So Alive”

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:14 pm
  32. Mickey Thomas says:

    You forgot about the “Chic vs. Sugarhill Gang”” where the song “Good Times” was used verbatim for the song “Rapper’s Delight”.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:14 pm
  33. J_T_McG says:

    “Though there’s no question about Zep’s talent or abilities to write amazing music” yeah except from me and Pete Townsend. They were the original wanna be poser band and with the exception of a couple of tunes had no song-writing talent. Anyone who would cosign Robert Plant’s shrieking like he’s having his hemorrhoids out without anesthesia doesn’t deserve to be remembered. (And according to women in the documentary about Sunset Strip, no group degraded and debased their female groupies more than this group of phonies. Keith Moon was right, the should have bombed like a Led Zeppelin but instead they pioneered a mass market for crap that too many other bands to capitalize on as well. Oh baby oh woman oh baby oh woman ah ah ah. Hock tooey.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:15 pm
  34. RickR says:

    The refrain in Radiohead’s “Karma Police” borrows heavily from the Beatles’ “Sexy Sadie”. As McCartney said decades ago, steal from the best.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:36 pm
  35. Chris Vaughn says:

    Posies - Golden Blunders is Hollies Jennifer Eccles
    Joe Walsh - Meadows is Blackmore’s My Woman From Toykyo

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:50 pm
  36. pratik says:

    This is a pretty old video many of you might have already seen it ‘http://vimeo.com/14912890’ but its an interesting one shows some blatant copies .

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 2:51 pm
  37. Stratman_of_old says:

    At the time of this writing, “Vanz Kant Danz” is at:
    http://youtu.be/ZgZC4Nt4oXI

    ps: Right on, Andy!

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:00 pm
  38. WhaleBone says:

    Led Zep stole almost everything they recorded on their first two records. Taking from Willie Dixon, Howlin’ Wolf, and Otis Rush….Willie settled for one song, even though 12 were in question. He actually liked Led Zep and they became friends. Marie Dixon once told me that, “That Robert Plant is a real sweet guy”........

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:01 pm
  39. dan says:

    Franc was closer but the man’s name is Alan Price from the Animals and Leadbelly was nowhere near the first to record House of the Rising Sun. The Lindsay Anderson movie, O Lucky Man, has a soundtrack by Alan Price and Alan Price playing himself in the film.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:02 pm
  40. Adam Panik says:

    Jimmy Page supposedly stole the opening chords of “Stairway to Heaven” from the band “Spirit”. HOWEVER, in 1959, British guitarist, Davey Graham recorded a version of “Cry Me a River” with exactly the same intro. As a budding young guitarist, there’s no way Jimmy Page would have been unaware of the best British guitarist on the scene.
    http://youtu.be/tWeejHJxGjs

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:12 pm
  41. Jerry says:

    How about the song Best of My Love (Not the Eagles song) and the song Emotions from Mariah Carey? True dat on The Air That I Breathe by The Hollies and Creep by Radiohead.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:13 pm
  42. Doug says:

    It’s ridiculous realy. There is actual ripping of of someone else’s work. balanced against the fact that there are only so many notes and only so many ways they can be put together. what we are headed towards is that there will be no more songs and no new music and no one will be free to express themselves ever again because it MIGHT sound like some thing some one else has done. This is unavoidable. there is no way that you can play a sequence of notes that has not been played by some one some where in the last 100 years. We are GIVING music to the LAWYERS and there will be no new music without them sueing someone…Do you realy want to live in a world where there is no new songs, no more new music and lawyers telling you what you can and can’t do to express the feelings inside of you????

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:27 pm
  43. WhaleBone says:

    In the case of Led Zep it isn’t even questionable. Straight out ripping off. It cost LZ 4.6 million for one song and every piece of sheet music after ‘94 the credits got changed. Take the time and make the effort to listen to Willie Dixon and make up your own mind about it. You might even discover alot of stuff you didn’t know about. Things like his songs that have been covered by the Doors, Stones, EVERYBODY, etc., etc…...The guy’s a national treasure and most folks aren’t even aware of who he is…..AND the influence he’s had on music in general….

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:40 pm
  44. Adam Panik says:

    Unfortunately, the music business is just that - a business.  Intellectual property is routinely stolen and vast sums of money can be made by unscrupulous “artists” the fact that Led Zeppelin have been busted for it so many times suggests that they had no qualms about plagiarism. The Rolling Stones, Cream, Fleetwood Mac, on the other hand, used lots of other peoples material but credited the original artists. It didn’t harm their careers and their credibility remains in tact.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:45 pm
  45. Dave says:

    There are only 12 notes, right? How the heck is EVERYTHING supposed to be completely original?

    How much of this, even if it seems incredibly similar, is because the latter artist heard it once from the former and it stayed in them like a bad virus and then one day came out and they thought it was original? Can we ever really know for sure if the intent was malicious?

    Just sayin’

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 3:53 pm
  46. Me says:

    Every white rock band in the 50s and 60s ripped off riffs from black blues players and every rock band since has ripped off riffs from rocks bands in the 50s and 60s. That’s kind how music works. We ingest what we hear, spit out slight variations and call in original.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 4:00 pm
  47. Trevor says:

    Chuck Berry’s - You Can’t Catch Me and Bo Diddley’s - Who Do You Love, sound very similar to me. They were both recorded in 1956. Coincidence? Did one copy the other? Were they derived from some archetypal blues song from past generations or did they copy a song from some unknown blues artist?

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 4:03 pm
  48. Apexx23 says:

    Yup! Most of you are HIGH!

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 4:18 pm
  49. Smiley says:

    The intro guitar licks on the Chuck Berry tune, “You Can’t Catch Me” are identical to the guitar lick intro to The Beatles song “The One After 9:09”. That’s twice (at least) Mop-Tops. But if you’re gonna steal, steal from the best…

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 4:18 pm
  50. JKD says:

    Andy, Sugar’s “A Good Idea” is so obviously intended as a homage to the Pixies! I don’t think it’s fair to throw it into the ranks of what seem to be less-than-honourable lifting of riffs or passages, almost 100% sure that tune came from a good place with a very knowing wink behind it.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 4:30 pm
  51. Rickster says:

    Bob Marley must of been smoking and watching the Banana Splits. Buffalo Soldier sounds like the Banana Splits theme song.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 4:40 pm
  52. Richie Nicosia says:

    I bought LZ’s albums when they first came out and as a guitarist learned alot of great stuff from them. The albums will always be great and that goes for many of the bands througout the 60’s and 70’s. All I want to do is keep enjoying the music as always. I couldn’t careless who they stole it from. They could have stole it from my mother for all I care. The song remains the same….great!

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 4:53 pm
  53. Nick says:

    What about Pearl Jams Yellow Ledbetter Vs Kenny Wayne Sheperds While we cry!

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 5:03 pm
  54. Rob Iacullo says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SE49bsxGTFM

    Mash up of Imagine and Band on the Run

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 5:29 pm
  55. mote says:

    coldplay are multiple offenders…the main riff of “yellow” is lifted from “here” by pavement and even more shamelessly “hello future” is a complete rip off of “computer love” by kraftwerk.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 5:34 pm
  56. Triad999 says:

    Rush, a truly great band that has never stolen anything! (OK they borrowed the three stooges version of Three Blind Mice for their openings live, which itself was pilfered. (Uh ...OK I do do see how this gets sticky)  (((LOL))) So I guess the trick here is stay complex and you are safe - er. (no ...wait a minute that didn’t help Satriani)

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 5:53 pm
  57. Mike Reese says:

    Surprised Joe Meeks’ ‘TELSTAR’ wasn’t mentioned - a French composer accused Meek of ripping one of his compositions for Telstar, the litigation went on long enough to keep Meek from seeing a dime in royalties before he died

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 6:06 pm
  58. aaron says:

    No mention of Steely Dan’s “Gaucho” ripping off Keith Jarrett’s “As long as you are living yours”?

    I believe the Dan had to sign over half of the royalties to Jarrett for that one ...

    both songs are great, by the way ...

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 6:13 pm
  59. I_Like_Books says:

    There is only 7 notes…Some of these are certainly valid as the melody and chords under it are the same…But in most cases it’s just a matter of the subconscious feeding something “catchy” to the conscious mind. I’m still puzzled by the Radiohead/Hollies one…Yes the chords are the same. But the melody is totally different!!!...Not to mention there has to be 100’s of songs with that same progression…Sh*t…How many songs are Watchtower? Then there’s the classic progression of I - V - vi - IV used in With Or Without You, Spiderwebs, Just What I Needed, and quite literally 1000’s of other songs. And also i - VI - III - VII
    ...If it’s blatant like Coldplay then of course compensation should be given…But for the most part it’s not something done on purpose…I’m a professional songwriter. Yes I play guitar, piano, etc…But the real point of all music is to express emotion through a physical medium and be a Classical Movement or a Punk tune…It’s all about the song…And again…there’s only 7 notes. It’s how those notes channel through the writer and how they combine melody and rhythm that makes it original…ALL combinations of chord progression have been used in Rock music by now…Sh*t…in all music…
    http://jaltcoh.blogspot.com/2009/06/2-most-overused-chord-progressions-in.html

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 6:17 pm
  60. I_Like_Books says:

    PS:
    Radiohead are The Beatles of the past 20 years…The Bends, OK Computer, & Kid A are the 3 most innovative records since Rubber Soul, Revolver, and Sergeant Pepper…The band doesn’t even like “Creep” b/c they were all quite literally kids when they wrote it and that record came out. In 2001 or 02, whenever that lawsuit came about…They didn’t even argue it. Not b/c they stole it but b/c they didn’t care. They just went, “yea it’s the same chords, give them half the royalties”…If someone tried to do that with Paranoid Android or Karma Police I’m sure they would have put up more of a fight…lol

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 6:29 pm
  61. Henrik says:

    Like writen before.

    Theres only so many chords and notes.
    It´s not that hard to write something that´s already been done. That dosen´t mean that you ever heard the “original” that was probably already nicked from somewhere else to beginn with.

    Just search 4chord song on youtube :-)) same chords can creat a lot of melody. Eventually things will be similar. blablablablaaa

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 6:34 pm
  62. CountFeedback says:

    Wonder if Coldplay will get busted for stealing the lick for their song “Talk” from Kraftwerk’s Computer Love?

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 8:21 pm
  63. Dilson Benevides says:

    Another one : Zeppelin’s Stairway to Heaven and the song Taurus from Spirit !

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 8:33 pm
  64. Bluesman345 says:

    Hotel California by the Eagles and Angie by the Rolling Stones?

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 8:38 pm
  65. Wes Richey says:

    So 5=6?

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 8:49 pm
  66. ComedyFolk says:

    Hadly rock, but how about the opening melody of Goldfinger -v- Moon River.  I believe both won the same award (Emmy or something) in consecutive years.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 9:05 pm
  67. Alex says:

    Gary Moore was sued for stealing Jud’s Gallery’s song Nordrach - the song sounds a lot like Still Got the Blues.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 9:23 pm
  68. mfunky says:

    How could you miss “Still got the Blues” (Gary Moore vs.  Jud’s Gallery): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Still_Got_the_Blues

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 9:28 pm
  69. Nigel says:

    “Good artists borrow, great artists steal” McCartney used this quote (though not originally)

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 9:55 pm
  70. HoldenLitgo says:

    “Every poet is a thief” - Phrostbyte

    I’m stealing that.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 10:07 pm
  71. Steve Adkins says:

    Led Zeppelin is the all - time champ of song swipery. They heisted “Stairway To Heaven” from Randy California (Spirit) and have paid claims to numerous bluesmen. Nobody even comes close to their record of plagiarism.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 10:38 pm
  72. Ben says:

    KISS had a song on Psycho Circus called “Dreaming” which was a take on Alice Cooper’s “I’m Eighteen.” I think there was even a lawsuit.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 10:46 pm
  73. SpoonWood says:

    Lesser artists borrow, great artists steal.
    Igor Stravinsky

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 11:11 pm
  74. Brad says:

    Nickleback’s ‘This Is How You Remind Me’ and… Nickelback’s ‘Someday’

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cqwgPsJPIq4

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 11:11 pm
  75. Sam says:

    Every song on Green Day’s album American Idiot vs. Johnny Cash, et al

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 11:12 pm
  76. Dave from CT says:

    Steve Miller has been accused (arguably, and rightfully so) of “copping” melody lines from other songs; at least two of his better-known songs have more than a glaring similarity to other songs.

    For example…
    “SPACE COWBOY”  has a much-too-similar melody line as The Beatles’ “LADY MADONNA.”
    “THE STAKE” bears a little too much resemblance to Joe Walsh’s “ROCKY MOUNTAIN WAY.”
    …And then, a lesser-known song from his “SAILOR” LP, called “DIME A DANCE ROMANCE,” whose main lick more than borrows heavily from The Stones’ “JUMPIN’ JACK FLASH.”

    But, in all fairness, The Kinks are just as guilty of the same thing; they also swiped the ““JUMPN” JACK FLASH” lick on “CATCH ME NOW I’M FALLING.”

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 11:14 pm
  77. Marcelo Valença says:

    It’s a Beautiful Day “Bombay Calling” and Purple’s “Child in Time”. Both nice tunes.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 11:24 pm
  78. Mojave Johnson says:

    David Bowie and John Lennon’s “Fame” is a note for note copy of James Brown’s “Hot (I Need to be Loved, Loved, Loved)”.  I haven’t bothered to see if there was ever a lawsuit about it, but it’s BLATANT.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 11:40 pm
  79. Bird Man says:

    All songs, in popular culture, to some extent, are derivative works….the trick is ,as a writer, when you discover that you’re stepping on someones toes, if you actually give a shit….being able to disguise the source of your inspiration. While not impossible…it’s highly improbable that songs written today are not the result of an eclectic mish mash of bygone compositions. You can’t create in a vacuum….you need some kind of input.

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 11:45 pm
  80. DallasB says:

    Folks, I’ve studied music history as we know it (decent notations didn’t really get started until around the time of Pope Gregory in the 600s) and this stuff has ALWAYS gone on.  ALL of the “orginal” Catholic mass music that was composed in the 600s-800s was just arranged, rearranged, added to, and morphed all the way until the 1500s or so.  GUESS WHAT, if history repeats itself we’ve got about 700 more years of this kinda thing going on in rock music.  Hey, don’t forget about rap/hip-hop “sampling” songs, too!  Eminem in the same league as Leonin and Perotin?  Weird!

    Also, the quote attributed to McCartney above (which proves the point of this article, BTW) is originally by the classical composer Igor Stravinsky. “A good composer does not imitate, he steals.” 
    IRONICALLY he also said “I know that the twelve notes in each octave and the variety of rhythm offer me opportunities that all of human genius will never exhaust.”
    “There are very few authentically original artists, and half of them nobody wants to listen to, anyway.”-I said that…

    posted on November 13, 2013 at 11:57 pm

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