There's Only So Many Ways To Combine Chords...

from the so-stop-worrying-about-copying dept

The whole Coldplay/Joe Satriani copyright fight is pretty silly for a a variety of reasons. Yes, there are some similarities, but there's a ton of stuff in music that sounds the same. There's a great chapter in James Boyle's The Public Domain all about Ray Charles' song I Got A Woman, where Boyle goes back in time to show how Charles' song basically copies from a few others (in some cases rather blatantly) in order to effectively invent soul music. Then he moves forward and looks at how others have built off of Charle's song as well. You can read the whole chapter (and, indeed, the whole book) online. The chapter in question is Chapter 6: I Got a Mashup.

Then, of course, many folks have seen the comedian who points out how many songs are based on the same basic progression as Pachelbel's Canon in D:


Along those lines, reader Bill Squire has sent in this similar video about how many songs use the same basic chord progression as Journey's Don't Stop Believing:
And yet, now some people are worried that one musician has come up with a similar song?

Filed Under: chords, humor, music, similarity


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  1. identicon
    RD, 23 Jan 2009 @ 3:43pm

    Re James Keegan

    "Until you have the legal or musical background, please stay out of my business."

    Until you have read the constitution and its 1st amendment, please stay out of MY business. One doesnt have to be qualified or a participant in the industry in the topic of an article to comment on it. Sorry, but I have every right to say what I want. You can dislike it, you can disagree, Mike can ban me (as its his site) but YOU dont get to tell ME (or anyone) that we cant comment on what we think is something stupid, or wrong. People call things like they see them. If you dont like that and think they dont have a right to do so, please see yourself post haste to the nearest airport or port of your choice and remove yourself from this country. The stench of your elitism and nazi-like commands is offensive and not needed.

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