Eddy Grant Accuses Gorillaz Of Copying After Gorillaz Manager Threatens People For Copying...

from the where-to-start dept

So, the music press has been busy talking about the accusations from Eddy Grant that the band Gorillaz copied his old tune with one of their recent hits. You can compare the two songs here. There appear to be some similarities, but they're pretty different songs:
The timing on this is a bit interesting. Gorillaz is a band from Damon Albarn, and just a couple months ago, the manager of Albarn's musical acts (Blur, Gorillaz) was screaming about how he wanted to give "pirates" who leaked the Gorillaz album a "good kicking." Perhaps he ought to stay away from Eddy Grant for a bit.

Of course, it's a bit silly for Grant to be upset too. He wrote a song that was popular years ago, and now he wants free cash because some other band made a song that has some vague similarities?


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
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    Rob.Etler (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 6:41am

    Funny, I thought "Stylo" was a perfect copy of "I Against I" by Massive Attack. Both feature Mos Def.

     

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  2.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 6:44am

    Re:

    Okay:

    A. Massive Attack is on eof the most underappreciated musical acts of all time

    and

    B. Maybe it's just me, but those two songs don't even sound ANYTHING alike to me. That may be because I hate house/techno music the way a fat kid hates treadmills....

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 6:48am

    Well I guess he deserves what he got. Live by copyright, die by copyright.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 6:56am

    There are only 7 notes (12 if you count the sharps and flats). There are only a finite number of ways you can arrange them in a song. There are even less ways to arrange them that sound pleasing to the ear. The chances of two people independently chancing on a similar arrangement without ever hearing the other's work is therefore pretty good. Maybe this is just that, a coincidence...

     

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  5.  
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    Ima Fish (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 6:59am

    Electric Avenue is the worst "song" in history. So if the Gorillaz did copy from Grant, that makes them the worst band in history.

     

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  6.  
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    herodotus (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:06am

    "That's MY crappy forgettable pop son!"

    "No, it's MY crappy forgettable pop song!"

    "I was writing crappy forgettable pop songs before you were born, punk!"

    "So die already! YOUR kind of crappy forgettable pop song is already forgotten, whereas MY kind of crappy forgettable pop song is the wave of the soon to be forgotten future!"

    And so on, and on.....

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:07am

    Even if they didn't outright sample and manipulate the original synth riff, they can NOT not have known it sounded so similar. It's not like Gorillaz is some unknown band, they have the money to clear samples and/or give a writing credit to the guy : guilty.

     

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  8.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:10am

    Re:

    "Electric Avenue is the worst "song" in history."

    Funky Town tops Electric avenue anyday of the week ... dont even get me started on Yoko Ono ...

     

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  9.  
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    Rob.Etler (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:11am

    Re: Re:

    Agreed on the MA being underappreciated. And on the house/techno hate. But the songs really do seem to carry the same structure. I dunno, maybe it's just me.

     

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  10.  
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    JMG, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:17am

    Re:

    If we're talking worst. song. ever. I've got two words: MacArthur Park.

     

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  11.  
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    PopeRatzo (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:20am

    Silliness

    Pop musicians accusing each other of copying is like ninjas accusing each other of being sneaky.

    That's what they do. Shut up already.

    Gorrilaz makes some fun music, but for them to try to claim that their work is some sort of protected "intellectual property" is nonsense.

    God, copyright is poison. It makes people sick and crazy.

     

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  12.  
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    Mark Harrill (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:31am

    Re: Re:

    I see your MacArthur Park and raise you a Don't Worry Be Happy

     

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  13.  
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    Rob.Etler (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:45am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I'm going with Winchester Cathedral. At least MacArthurt Park didn't beat out Eleanor Rigby for Best Song at the Grammy's.

     

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  14.  
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    scarr (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:47am

    A lawsuit would be stupid, but anyone who claims they can't hear any similarity didn't listen to the songs. There's a repeating three-note synth line that is exactly the same in both songs.

    That isn't a "blatent rip-off", as it isn't terribly unique riff, but I can clearly see how one would remind a person of the other.

     

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  15.  
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    Ima Fish (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:47am

    Re: Re:

    "Yoko Ono ..."

    The mistake you're making is your assumption that Yoko Ono is a musician who creates music. Comparing the quality of a song to the quality of a bloody corpse is nonsensical.

     

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  16.  
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    Hulser (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:47am

    Re:

    Even if they didn't outright sample and manipulate the original synth riff, they can NOT not have known it sounded so similar.

    So, you're saying it's not possible that The Gorillaz could be unaware that one of the trillion songs that have been recorded sounds roughly similar to their song? Rather than impossible, I think it's almost certain.

    It's not like Gorillaz is some unknown band, they have the money to clear samples and/or give a writing credit to the guy : guilty.

    But if you're the person from Gorillaz who wrote this song and you've never even heard the Eddie Grant song, you wouldn't even think to clear the sample of give writing credits because it wasn't a sample and you wrote it.

     

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  17.  
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    Trails (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:51am

    Re: Re:

    You can tell I'm a geek because it took me a good 5 minutes of re-reading to figure out you meant "one of" and not using some new vernacular which describes Massive Attack as awesome by referring to them as being on the end of a file.

     

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  18.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:55am

    Re: Re: Re:

    And you can tell that I still have a long ways to go in attaning my sought after geek card because I had to reread both our comments about six times before having any clue as to what you were talking about :)

     

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  19.  
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    Hulser (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 7:59am

    Re:

    Electric Avenue is the worst "song" in history.

    What makes this story doubly perplexing is that 95% of the people who even know who Eddie Grant is only know him for Electric Avenue and that isn't even the song Gorillaz are being accused of copying. Doh!

    Also, about the worst song in history comment. This reminds me of those VH1 "top worst songs" shows. The thing is, if they really found the worst songs, they'd be by no one anyone ever heard of. What these shows should really be called is "Let's make fun of some videos that were popular at the time, but look silly in hind sight."

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 8:20am

    Re: Re:

    Yeah, right. Nobody in Gorillaz' entourage ever went clubbing EVER. Please.

     

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  21.  
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    Rob.Etler (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 8:27am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    And...you know what? I'm not even close to getting that geek card. I'll just stand back and watch you guys blow me out of the water. :P

     

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  22.  
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    Bob Webster (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 8:35am

    Melody

    A simple arpeggio does not make a melody, and that is all that is similar (and not even identical) between the songs. It sounds like something I made up on the piano when i was 5 years old.

     

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  23.  
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    JPR, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 8:43am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I'm 26, from the UK, have had a weekly DJ residency in a large nightclub for the last three years, and I've NEVER HEARD THIS SONG.

     

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  24.  
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    Michial Thompson, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 9:11am

    I tried to listen

    I can hear the similarities in the two songs, from the vocals (not words) to the beat to the notes, but doesn't copyright require it to be "copied"

    As someone pointed out there are only 12 notes, and a finite number of combinations that are tolerable to the ear, and take that times the number of instruments and you still have only a small number of combinations compared to the number of songs out there.

    To me they both sound like any other song you would hear in a techno club, and to be honest they all sound alike to me so maybe he should be sueing everyone.

     

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  25.  
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    PRMan, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 9:15am

    Really?

    That's a real band? I thought that Apple made it up to put o the iPod box.

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 9:34am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It's one of Derrick May's favorite tunes ever.

    It came out in the early EIGHTIES.

    It's been sampled dozens of times.

    Environ/Balihu are basically built upon copying this tune over and over.

    Gorillaz aren't just some noobs who reinvented the wheel. They can't NOT know this song.

     

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  27.  
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    The Infamous Joe (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 9:52am

    Re: Re:

    Speaking of popular videos (or not?) am I the only one that doesn't understand why UB40's video for 'Red, Red Wine' is a bunch of white people drinking beer?

    so confused.

     

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  28.  
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    The Infamous Joe (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 9:57am

    Re: Silliness

    Not sure why, but your comment immediately made me think of A Ninja Pays Half My Rent(youtube video)

    What? I'm in a sharing mood, okay?

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 11:26am

    BOBBY FUCKING WOMACK?!?

     

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  30.  
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    vivaelamor (profile), Mar 17th, 2010 @ 12:46pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    I'm a geek too? I'm shocked.

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 1:03pm

    seems to me his point is to give them some of their own medicine to prove the stupidity of it all

     

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  32.  
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    Dave, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 2:12pm

    Re: Re:

    Impressive worst song choices! I agree, Electric Avenue is abysmal, MacArthur Park is wretched, Yoko Ono is like dentist drilling. I'll offer another selection: Seasons in the Sun.

    Back briefly to the subject, wow, Eddy's been hitting the spliffs pretty hard, I think... if that song is actionable, then the Satriani vs. Coldplay suit would be a guaranteed win for Satriani.

     

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  33.  
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    DMNTD, Mar 17th, 2010 @ 3:54pm

    I see..

    I ditch effort for new attention.

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    Horatio, Mar 18th, 2010 @ 9:05am

    A three note riff? C-Eb-Bb all on the counts 1-2-3(hold) is a copyright violation? We are totally fucked if this is upheld in any court anywhere.

     

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  35.  
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    Oscar, Mar 18th, 2010 @ 10:14pm

    nope

    not cuz the melody line has 6 notes out of 8 that are the same that the song's the same, that's complete and massive BS by Eddie... + gorillaz' has that bridge in a different tone, not to mention the intense soul signing. Oh and BTW, i love house, but this «time wrap», this is crappy house!

     

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  36.  
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    Don, Mar 19th, 2010 @ 9:27am

    Time Warp ripoff

    If Damon stole it from Eddy Grant, then Eddy Grant stole it from Marvin Gaye's vocalizing at the beginning of this song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmZ03Q7AoaU

     

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  37.  
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    Douche, Mar 30th, 2010 @ 4:20pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "They can't NOT know this song."

    Neither of my parents nor uncles/aunts or anything who went clubbing around this time have any clue what the song is and have never heard it before. I have no idea what Environ/Balihu are, and Derrick May?

     

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  38.  
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    ash, Jan 12th, 2011 @ 9:47am

    Gorillaz?

     

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  39.  
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    SEO, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 2:16pm

    Well they do seem pretty similar!

     

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  40.  
    identicon
    praveen, Jan 26th, 2011 @ 3:47am

    news

    such a nice blog..!! thanks for giving a opportunity to see this wonderful blog....

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
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    bjjbook, Apr 24th, 2011 @ 10:10pm

    As someone pointed out there are only 12 notes, and a finite number of combinations that are tolerable to the ear, and take that times the number of instruments and you still have only a small number of combinations compared to the number of songs out there. ran แรน

     

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  42.  
    identicon
    RudolphAlpa, Jul 2nd, 2011 @ 10:29pm

    I wish that I do not have a language barrier for me to be able to contribute towards the existence of this website. I would like to propose for the web admin and webmaster to allow english posting for english speaking people in that country as well. afghan chat

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    identicon
    Video Production, Jul 12th, 2011 @ 1:45am

    Video Production

    These days with sampling, remixes and covers it's such a fine line between duplicating the same song to taking a part of it to create a new song. Technology in music despite its improvements has also brought with it its own array of issues. I'm not sure, which side of the fence I'm on with this, all I know is, is that it's rather complicated!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
    identicon
    KelasDerk, Jul 20th, 2011 @ 4:20am

    The underlying problems experienced by many other musical magazine in other countries maybe related with lack of support from the music fans them self. They have to realized that without the support from them, there will be no more music reference like these magazines anymore. mensagens

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
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    StevenSegal (profile), Nov 21st, 2011 @ 9:46am

    This provides coverage for the insured aircraft against damage when it is on the ground and not in motion. This would provide protection for the aircraft for such events as fire, theft, vandalism, flood, mudslides, animal damage, wind or hailstorms, hangar collapse or for uninsured vehicles or aircraft striking the aircraft. The amount of coverage may be a blue book value or an agreed value that was set when the policy was purchased.Aviation Insurance

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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