David Letterman Mocks The Eagles Over Refusal To License Their Music

from the well-deserved dept

Rob Hyndman alerts us to this amusing story about David Letterman mocking the Eagles and their ridiculous policy on licensing their music. Don Henley, in particular, has quite the history of being really, really angry about anyone daring to want to enjoy his music. Just a few months ago, he was angrily attacking some other musicians for daring to do cover songs (leading to this epic response).

That brings us back to the recent Letterman show. Apparently, the Eagles were performing in NY and Dave was talking to an audience member who was excited to go to see the band. So Dave wanted Paul Shaffer to play some Eagles music. That resulted in a discussion between some of the show's staff, in which one claimed that the band wouldn't even give them a number for how much the music would cost as they have a "flat no policy for television," while another claims that you could "play three lines" without getting sued (which is a potentially dangerously naive view of fair use). There's a bunch more debate, before Dave asks the show's director in the control room, Jerry Foley, what to do. Foley says "play the music and see what happens" leading to much cheering. Letterman and Shaffer go back and forth debating which song to play... before Letterman finally realizes that the Eagles' music just isn't worth it:
"You know what? I'm not that interested anymore..."
When you make listening to your music a chore, don't be surprised when some people decide it's just not worth it.

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  • icon
    Violynne (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 10:52am

    This is great stuff, because ask anyone on the street to name to Eagles songs, and they'll say "Hotel California" and then go silent.

    Only those who actually bought any of their albums can name the other song.

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    • identicon
      David, 16 Sep 2014 @ 11:17am

      Re:

      Naming the other song is likely copyright infringement.

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    • icon
      Christopher Best (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 11:43am

      Re:

      I'm pretty sure people would know Desperado or at least Tequila Sunrise... :P

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:01pm

      Re:

      They had a lot more hits that are very well known than that though. Sure kids in their twenties might not know anything else but pretty much everyone else would.

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      • identicon
        JEDIDIAH, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:26pm

        You're off by some decades there.

        > They had a lot more hits that are very well known than that though. Sure kids in their twenties might not know anything else but pretty much everyone else would.

        When I was in school 30 years ago, the Eagles were thought of as something that old people listened to.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:59pm

          Re: You're off by some decades there.

          I was going to say the same thing.

          But the issue here goes deeper than that: the Eagles wrote some great music for others, and laid down some great master tracks. But they never shared -- they considered each song a "final work" like a painting; the result is that while a lot of people actually know, and sometimes even like, the stuff written by Henley, Hotel California is the only song that people actually *associate* with them.

          But then, compare that to a group like Dead or Alive -- which again, probably very few people could name two songs done by them. And yet, there have been so many remixes and covers done of "You Spin Me Round" that it's not thought of as "the previous generation's music" even though the subtitle on the original version is (like a record) which dates it pretty well.

          For some reason, The Eagles always remind me of the poem Ozymandias.

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    • identicon
      Rich Kulawiec, 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:44pm

      Re:

      "Ask[ing] anyone on the street" is hardly a meaningful way to assess the quality or quantity of any artist's works. Regardless of Henley's actions here, he and the rest of the Eagles wrote and recorded some great music that has already demonstrated its ability to hold up over time -- much like, to pick some other examples, Pink Floyd, the Beatles, Chuck Berry, Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Billie Holiday, Stravinsky and Beethoven.

      Will it still be relevant in 2114? Impossible to say. Maybe the passage of that time will finally render it substantially less meaningful. But we're not there yet, and "Desperado" is still as achingly beautiful as it was 40 years ago -- for any listener with a brain and a heart.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2014 @ 1:11am

        Re: Re:

        Will it still be relevant in 2114? Impossible to say.

        For songs to remain relevant to culture, they have to be known, and performed, otherwise they become a chapter in a dry history book, and only known to music historians. The known and performed part is more important than any intrinsic quality of a song.

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    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 10:51pm

      This is so going to define my demographic...

      Journey of the Sorcerer, anyone?

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  • identicon
    Michael, 16 Sep 2014 @ 11:26am

    Ok, let's all take it easy on the Eagles. This desperado Letterman has gone overboard with his lyin' eyes. If he is going to take it to the limit like this and cause an uproar, one of these nights the Eagles may decide that suing him may be the last resort, but still worth it.

    So remember, when you are living live in the fast lane, you need to be careful because you could wind up in court and whether you win or lose, all of your money could be already gone. In the long run, it's just not worth it to play their music.

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  • icon
    art guerrilla (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 11:30am

    this is how stupid this is...

    ...I'm a medium eagles fan, BUT -until i got to the end of the article- i *thought* this was about the philadelphia eagles football team refusing to license their team fight song or something, which didn't make sense either...

    THAT is how far OUT OF MIND the eagles are as a band to me: irrelevant... and i say this with one of my ten cd's in my truck being a best of eagles...

    that, and don henley is a 'tard in wayfarers...

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  • icon
    Gwiz (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 11:33am

    Just Curious

    Couldn't Shaffer's band just play the music and pay a compulsory license as a live cover?

    Or does that change because it's broadcast on TV? How does that work for any other band who records their live performances of covers and releases the videos?

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:02pm

      Re: Just Curious

      Broadcasting the song changes the needed licence. For you second question, I'm not 100% sure but I assume there is a mix between getting the proper licence, getting the okay from the artist, and/or flying under the radar. Maybe someone could jump in with more information.

      Interesting side note, my buddy recorded a bunch of music festivals on his cell and put them on YouTube. Every single takedown notice was because it was a cover song.

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    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:16pm

      Re: Just Curious

      Couldn't Shaffer's band just play the music and pay a compulsory license as a live cover?


      You can get a compulsory for an *audio* cover. But you need a separate sync license for audio that is accompanied by video. And there is no compulsory sync license. Has to be negotiated one by one.

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      • identicon
        Jason, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:34pm

        Re: Re: Just Curious

        It's that family of craziness that keeps so many vintage TV shows from being released on DVD.

        (For people who, you know, want to pay money to buy them.)

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:03pm

          Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

          Which shows can't be on DVD because of this? This is a new one for me.

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          • icon
            jupiterkansas (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:13pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

            For a long time it was WKRP and Wonder Years, but it seems those issues have been resolved. I'm sure there are many others.

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            • icon
              Roger Strong (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:26pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

              "Resolved" in WKRP's case by replacing much of the music with generic substitutes from studio musicians. And by shortening many key scenes or cutting them altogether, to avoid using music where the license had run out.

              This is why few people are impressed by WKRP when they see it in reruns or on DVD. It's just not the same show.

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              • identicon
                DogBreath, 16 Sep 2014 @ 2:35pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                Good News:

                In the WKRP case it finally has been resolved with a new DVD release that will have the original music restored. Too bad this is one of the very few exceptions and not the rule.

                'WKRP in Cincinnati' is getting a DVD release with its original music

                On Oct. 28, Shout! Factory will release the first complete series-spanning WKRP DVD set, with its original soundtrack gloriously restored. (Orders through the Shout! Factory site get early delivery on Sept. 23.) The 13-disc set will include not only new bonus features (including a 2014 panel discussion with members of the cast and crew), but actual songs by a staggeringly broad range of artists including Captain Beefheart, Elvis Costello, the Rolling Stones, Luther Vandross, Ray Charles, the Sir Douglas Quintet, and Huey Lewis & the News. Somewhere in sitcom heaven Johnny Fever and Venus Flytrap are exchanging cool ’70s-hipster handshakes.

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              • identicon
                AnonyBabs, 17 Sep 2014 @ 9:35am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                Ugh. Just recently saw one of my favorite episodes ruined by this. The "Soviet defector" story involves to a large degree the joke "Hold me closer, tiny dancer", but now it's been dubbed with some stupid meaningless phrase I can't even remember because they couldn't use the song to tie in the joke. Stop ruining my childhood, record labels!

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          • identicon
            Jason, 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:19pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

            There's a list of examples here. To be fair, not all of them are held up because of music licensing, there are plenty of other roadblocks as well, but it is a fairly common reason.

            Another example would be Quantum Leap which does have DVDs, but with generic music dubbed in instead of what was in the original broadcast. Blech.

            It seems to have stopped being as much of a concern for more recent shows, possibly because of the rise in popularity of DVD releases. A show airing now will quite likely have the rights secured up front for whatever they'll be including so that a DVD release is included.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:45pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

              Thanks! I started looking it up and I guess it does happen more than I noticed. Let me ask a question though because I almost always have the "other" opinion in the comment sections.

              So take the Wonder Years (even though it is out/coming out) for example. Do you think it is wrong for the artists who negotiated a contract for use of music in the late 80s to demand a new negotiation 15 years later? Or do you put the blame on the show creators who didn't have the forethought to negotiate sales for future releases?

              I suppose I can understand the frustration with shows that existed before the saturation of VHS and DVDs just because they had no way of knowing, but I find it hard to criticize the songwriter for wanting control over his or her product - which is actually the crux of the article.

              It doesn't actually hurt the musicians if the TV show with their song is pirated. So why not hold out for more money?

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              • icon
                jupiterkansas (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:57pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                For starters, it's rarely the artists making these negotiations. It's one big corporate music label negotiating with a big corporate television network. Each is trying to get the best deal from the other one, which includes limiting use of the music as much as possible by only allowing it for broadcast but not for sale (which up through the 80s was almost unheard of for TV shows, largely because there was no efficient means to package that much material).

                In other words, it's all about how middle men divide up culture into as many little pieces as possible so they can sell it off a piece at a time. You would think the right to use a song in a TV show would extend to all uses of that TV show into the future, but sadly those are different pieces with different price tags.

                And the big corporations like it this way because it keeps little people out of their business and gives them an excuse to hire lots of lawyers and middle men.

                It wasn't a big deal when the big corporations controlled the means of distribution, but now the internet lets anybody distribute music and video, and that's why copyright is such an issue for them. They can't do anything without the proper contracts being signed, but the little people are going around publishing material left and right.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 2:51pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                  Yeah, but who does the negotiations doesn't really change anything. I can get 10 bucks and hour digging ditches, but a recruiter can get me 20 bucks an hour minus 10% for his or her services. I'd be silly not to take the deal or at least look into it.

                  "You would think the right to use a song in a TV show would extend to all uses of that TV show into the future, but sadly those are different pieces with different price tags."

                  Not really. If the contract between the show and the musician says one time, it means one time even if the consumer had no say. If it says one time, then you can't get mad at the musician for wanting the distributors to hold up their end. If it says unlimited plays, then yeah go ahead.

                  But I think you answered yourself with this...

                  "Each is trying to get the best deal from the other one..."

                  Yep that's all it is. A negotiation between two parties -neither of which we belong to.

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                  • identicon
                    Rekrul, 16 Sep 2014 @ 7:57pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                    Yeah, but who does the negotiations doesn't really change anything. I can get 10 bucks and hour digging ditches, but a recruiter can get me 20 bucks an hour minus 10% for his or her services. I'd be silly not to take the deal or at least look into it.

                    What do you do when the person who needed the ditches says "Screw it! I'm not paying $20 an hour. I'll go find some other project instead."

                    Do you hold out for the $20 and lose out on work, or do you take the $10 that was originally offered?

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2014 @ 3:55am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                      You scream piracy and have the person who wants the ditches dug arrested.....

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              • identicon
                Jason, 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:59pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                It's not necessarily anyone's fault that the existing arrangements don't cover DVD releases... they didn't even exist at the time. (I don't know how many shows were ever put out on VHS; I only know of Star Trek as an example in that category, though doubtless there were others.)

                So no, I for one don't necessarily blame anybody for not predicting DVDs becoming a thing. And I don't necessarily blame the musicians/songwriters/etc. for wanting to negotiate a beneficial arrangement. But I wish there was some kind of middle ground, something akin to the compulsory licensing that Mike mentioned, so that those kinds of things could just "happen" and not be a major issue. Older shows are reran on TV with their music intact (or not, I guess; I wasn't aware of the WKRP situation) so a reasonable person ought to be able to expect them to get a DVD release. But since those formats are treated so differently it ends up being a roadblock.

                In the past I've preordered DVD sets at full MSRP (from the manufacturer's site no less, not even Amazon or something) the moment I saw the announcement that it was finally coming out. It's not about a few bucks difference either way (although I suppose there's a limit) but about enjoying a DVD release of a show I liked without having it mangled by alterations. Personally I'd much rather buy a complete DVD than track down the show online anyway. What good will it do a musician to hold out for more money if in the end they get none at all, and keep a popular show off the market in the process?

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 2:41pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                  I agree. It was just more of a thought experiment than anything. I DO wish there was a middle ground, but yeah that ain't gonna happen. The reality is all that will happen is less music will get into TV shows because of the hassle. Although I do think this is an interesting line...

                  "What good will it do a musician to hold out for more money if in the end they get none at all..."

                  I guess that's just the risk the musician will have to take. To use the Wonder Years again, I would think that if I were Joe Crocker (or whoever holds the rights to that theme) would want to hold out for more money. That's a pretty important part of the show, but I'm sure there are lots of musicians that had music placed in season 6 that are more than happy to take what they can get.

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              • identicon
                Rekrul, 16 Sep 2014 @ 8:07pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                So take the Wonder Years (even though it is out/coming out) for example. Do you think it is wrong for the artists who negotiated a contract for use of music in the late 80s to demand a new negotiation 15 years later? Or do you put the blame on the show creators who didn't have the forethought to negotiate sales for future releases?

                I put the blame on the on the people who turned copyright law into a tangled web of restrictions that do more to lock up culture than to actually protect it. In today's world, you need a separate license for everything.

                Record Company Exec: OK, I think that about it does it. You've got the license to perform the song on stage, the license to film you performing the song, the license to stream that video over the internet for free, the license to sell copies of the performance on DVD and the license to use clips of that performance in other media.

                Singer: Great! Now I just have to pick out what costume I'm going to wear.

                Record Company Exec: Woah! You didn't mention anything about a costume! We're also going to have negotiate a dramatic use license, a performing while in disguise license, a comedy license in case you do anything funny while on stage...

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              • icon
                nasch (profile), 17 Sep 2014 @ 3:27pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

                Do you think it is wrong for the artists who negotiated a contract for use of music in the late 80s to demand a new negotiation 15 years later? Or do you put the blame on the show creators who didn't have the forethought to negotiate sales for future releases?

                I blame long copyright terms. If copyright were 10-20 years this wouldn't be nearly as big an issue. It would become practical to just wait until it's public domain - as it was originally intended.

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            • identicon
              PRMan, 16 Sep 2014 @ 5:41pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

              And don't forget 21 Jump Street, the TV show that launched Johnny Depp's career. This show had amazing contemporary music that was woven seamlessly and beautifully into each episode.

              That has all been replaced on the DVD with the worst keyboard-heavy "80s music" you will ever hear. It's an absolute travesty that to my knowledge has never been fixed.

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:26pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

            There were a few TV series that got held up. "The Wonder Years" is one.

            Some companies got around this music rights issue by replacing the music in the TV series. Besides WKRP, the North America release of the Equalizer uses music from the 90's for this 80's TV show...

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          • identicon
            Rekrul, 16 Sep 2014 @ 7:51pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Just Curious

            Which shows can't be on DVD because of this? This is a new one for me.

            Reportedly the DVD release of the Fox show Werewolf had to be scrapped because they couldn't get the rights to two songs used in two episodes and the studio no longer had separate audio tracks so that the music could be replaced.

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      • icon
        Eldakka (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 9:16pm

        Re: Re: Just Curious

        So, could they have played the song and while doing that just put a still image for the entire set, i.e. turn TV into radio? how wonderful, how progressive.

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    • icon
      jupiterkansas (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:37pm

      Re: Just Curious

      Anyone that records a video of someone playing a song or puts a song in their video needs a sync license unless they can make a case for fair use, which can only be determined in a court of law.

      That's why Youtube is becoming a graveyard of taken down videos.

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  • icon
    PaulT (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 11:37am

    Let's get this out of the way - The Eagles have every right not to sell to consumers in the way they wish to buy.

    But - in doing so, they lose the right to complain when people consume the music in an unauthorised way. This might mean recording from the radio, borrowing discs, tapes or viewing bootleg videos. But, these have happened since the time they cut their first disc. They might also choose one of the thousands of other bands, some of whom are more relevant today.

    Most new arguments also make little sense in reality. Digital services don't pay enough? They pay more than alternatives if the customers in question won't pay without previewing or won't buy physical media. You don't want your album being played out of order or in an inferior quality? Newsflash: this has been happening for decades, even with your vinyls and CDs.

    While they have some of the biggest selling albums in history, why would non fans buy one? Old fans won't buy new CDs and new vinyl each year without some major incentive, and new fans won't know what you sound like, at least not legally. Because of my nationality and generation, I know Hotel California and the fact that Lebowski hates them. What incentive do you want to give me to find their music? Oh, it's not on Spotify? Oh, here's another band...

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:40pm

      Re:

      "The Eagles have every right not to sell to consumers in the way they wish to buy. But - in doing so, they lose the right to complain when people consume the music in an unauthorised way."

      No they don't.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:47pm

        Re: Re:

        They don't have the right to sell the product in the way they wish or they don't have the right to complain?

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      • identicon
        peter, 16 Sep 2014 @ 2:50pm

        Re: Re:

        Well no they don't, but they can hardly be surprised that the two possible reactions to their stance is either that the music gets copied/played unlawfully or, increasingly likely as time goes on, "who? never heard of them".

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 3:00pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Yeah but don't you understand the problem with that statement? You're just saying that the proper response to disliking a business model is to pirate their music.

          I mean analogies are always tricky, but let's say you hate Disney and all things Disney because... I dunno... capitalism. So don't go to Disney. Don't buy their products.

          But your response is to hop the fence and ride the rides. I mean, if there is an empty seat it doesn't cost them anything extra. It's not stealing. It's ridesharing.

          Sorry dude, I don't buy it. Pirate all you want, but don't treat it like some social cause.

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2014 @ 6:55pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            And what happens next? When the corporations don't get as rich as they want to be because people don't buy, they get laws approved that penalize people for perfectly legal behavior and consumer habits, because "they might be pirates". Have a computer? Pay up. Have a mobile phone with Internet connection? Pay up. Have a dick and fall within a certain age group that's likely to enjoy pornography? Pay up.

            No, the proper analogy right now is this - I don't want to watch Disney, I don't buy Disney, I don't pirate Disney, but I'm still being treated like I'm pirating or ridesharing.

            Sure, don't call it a social cause. Call it the autonomous response to getting blamed for something that wasn't even my damn fault.

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    • icon
      Whatever (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 5:35pm

      Re:

      But - in doing so, they lose the right to complain when people consume the music in an unauthorised way. This might mean recording from the radio, borrowing discs, tapes or viewing bootleg videos. But, these have happened since the time they cut their first disc. They might also choose one of the thousands of other bands, some of whom are more relevant today.

      The reality is that low level piracy will always exist. That doesn't change the artists rights to decide how and when their work will be sold or used (within the limits of what they can control).

      While they have some of the biggest selling albums in history, why would non fans buy one?

      Perhaps maybe they have reached the point as artists where they are confident enough in themselves that they realize that they don't need to give away too much trying to attract that last "fan". The band toured after many years of not being able to deal with each other (the Hell Freezes Over tour, so those who might not think they have a sense of humor), and since then have been a guaranteed sell out any time they perform. They really don't need the boost, they have plenty of great fans who talk them up already.

      Your assumption is that every band is always in a rush for one more fan and one more sale... can't you appreciate that perhaps they just no longer need to play that game?

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 5:47pm

        Re: Re:

        Your assumption is that every band is always in a rush for one more fan and one more sale... can't you appreciate that perhaps they just no longer need to play that game?

        So if they're no longer looking for sales, what's the issue?

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      • icon
        techflaws (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 10:43pm

        Re: Re:

        What game? Getting money for nothing, letting some poor schmuck pay through the nose for playing some chords you came up with ages ago?

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2014 @ 4:22am

        Re: Re:

        "Your assumption is that every band is always in a rush for one more fan and one more sale... can't you appreciate that perhaps they just no longer need to play that game?"

        Copyright exists so that artists can be adequately compensated for the work they do. If they have been adequately compensated, as the statement above suggests, then there is no need for the work to be protected by copyright anymore.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 11:39am

    A cover of Desperado - enjoy:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uUiL7F8TZ2s

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  • icon
    sehlat (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 11:40am

    Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

    I'm not going to name him. He doesn't deserve the publicity.

    [me]I was emailing him, and mentioned my opposition to DRM.

    [author]The police should have the authority to search anyone's hard drive over the net and remove anything they deem suspicious. Anybody who objects to this is a thief or thief wannabe.

    [me]I object. And aren't you being rather harsh to someone who has bought every book you ever wrote?

    [author]Big deal. All the royalties I've ever gotten from you wouldn't even pay for dinner at my favorite restaurant.

    My former collection of his stuff is now pulp fiction, and I haven't even been able to bring myself to pirate his stuff, much less read it.

    Don Henley is just another jerk of the same stripe.

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    • icon
      ChurchHatesTucker (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:13pm

      Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

      Should have asked if you could rummage through his hard drive and see if everything there was on the up and up.

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

      • identicon
        David, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:23pm

        Re: Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

        Yes, I think the police ought to rummage through his hard drive to see if he has any software I've written.

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

        • icon
          bssellin (profile), 17 Sep 2014 @ 8:12am

          Re: Re: Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

          And think of the Children!

          He may have porn on there!

          What if some innocent child were browsing his hard drive?

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

    • icon
      Keroberos (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:18pm

      Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

      Now I'm curious. Need to know who's books not to buy in the future.

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

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:42pm

        Re: Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

        I wrote it. I'm shaking in my boots thinking about how a pirate has proclaimed he won't be "purchasing" my books.

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

    • identicon
      David, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:26pm

      Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

      How much do you want to bet if he named him, the author would be they type to file a defamation lawsuit?

      In an unrelated question, if I were to rummage in your trash to find literature you have finished reading, what author(s) might I find?

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

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 3:30pm

      Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

      Yeah, now I want to know which author you're talking about as well, so I can make sure I never send any money their way. It's not publicity to name a scum-bag author so people can avoid them, it's a public service.

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

      • icon
        ltlw0lf (profile), 17 Sep 2014 @ 7:00am

        Re: Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

        Yeah, now I want to know which author you're talking about as well, so I can make sure I never send any money their way. It's not publicity to name a scum-bag author so people can avoid them, it's a public service.

        Simple, just send an email to every author who DRMs their books. After a while, you'll have a complete list of whom to purchase books from and whom not to. If everyone does it, then there can be no defamation lawsuits. ;-)

        I weep for the thousand or so email servers that will die to bring us this information.

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

    • icon
      Fitzwilly (profile), 9 Oct 2014 @ 12:11pm

      Re: Reminds me of an author I had a run-in with

      My guess is that it's Harlan Ellison, who sued Google for letting other sci-fi books by other authors be read for free without payment in royalties. He won the case, and is proud of it, I guess (even more so because he hates computers and the Internet.)

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

  • identicon
    jackn, 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:06pm

    ...while another claims that you could "play three lines" without getting sued (which is a potentially dangerously naive view of fair use)...

    This is a statement from Techdirt? What's happening here? Are you guys maturing?

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

  • icon
    Roger Strong (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:16pm

    We Have Comprehension!

    I've struggled to understand the "famous for being famous" trend, why no-talent Hiltons and Kardashians get so much press while so many with talent do not.

    Now I understand. Thanks, Henley!

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

  • icon
    JSD (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 12:45pm

    Policy enforcement during the concert

    I attended the Eagles concert at MSG on Saturday night and, on the floor at least, the ushers were enforcing a no still pictures or video policy. They got right into people's faces whenever mobile phones were out during the show.

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

  • icon
    jupiterkansas (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:24pm

    "Play it and see what happens."

    Most likely nothing after that exchange, but unfortunately few people have Letterman's bankroll to so brazenly break the law.

    And really, Dave, "Life in the Fast Lane" is your song, isn't it?

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

  • identicon
    David, 16 Sep 2014 @ 1:57pm

    This is a problem of money buying too much

    I mean, where is the point in blocking covers? They'll just increase the popularity and sales of the originals.

    Ok, then there is the case of Bob Dylan who music critics have repeatedly called the worst known performer of Bob Dylan songs. But even with all the better covers, he'll still make a comfortable living.

    But in the U.S.A., a comfortable living is nothing. You cannot exert your democratic influence on politics (in the U.S., that requires buying congress members since voting exerts as much influence on politics as choosing individual bricks does on architecture), you cannot buy security and medical care matching that of a hobo in a civilized country.

    In other countries, after a few millions there is nothing you can ask for that does not actually lower people's respect for you. In the U.S., you are scraping the bottom of the barrel unless you have a few billion to juggle around.

    And that means that anyone figuring out a way to make a dime needs some monopoly on making that dime in order to turn it into a billion.

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

    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 17 Sep 2014 @ 10:06pm

      Re: This is a problem of money buying too much

      When everyone is desperate to make a buck, then yeah we end up with a lot of people being dicks on the hope that dickery will make them a buck.

      That's not unique here. When Cecilia Giménez ruined the Jesus fresco in Zaragoza and the Church made a chunk charging for entry to see the ruined but famous fresco, Giménez wanted her chunk. This is not, I think because Giménez is inherently greedy, but because those of us at the bottom (most of us) have been rendered so desperate that we'll do anything, including jackassery, to get ahead.

      They charged $1.30 for entry, incidentally, and made $26,000. That's now desperate we are. That's how poor we are.

      And I'm not sure what's wrong with Don Henley, but he seems so desperate that he's killing the cultural value of his art.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 2:20pm

    Used to be a fan of The Eagles. I've not bought anything they've done in a long, long, time. After this article it is not likely I will support them anymore. I've gotten picky about who I'll buy music from. The likes of The Eagles have just joined the list with U2 and Metallica.

    Keep up the great work Henley. You'll be an unknown before you know it. Then you can do like the rest of the has beens and go around bothering people with the "remember me?" line. Can't happen soon enough.

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

  • icon
    tracyanne (profile), 16 Sep 2014 @ 4:02pm

    Don Henley is a Dick!

    The sooner he's forgotten the better.

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

    • icon
      John Fenderson (profile), 17 Sep 2014 @ 11:58am

      Re: Don Henley is a Dick!

      The only time Don Henley enters my consciousness anymore is when he engages in an example of dickery. So, for me anyway, what you wish for has already happened.

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

  • identicon
    JustMe, 16 Sep 2014 @ 5:15pm

    Take it Easy. . .

    It's easy to be critical of this kind of thing. But i recall some bands going after fox news for using there music between segments and i would have a problem with that if it was me!

    So i would say requiring approval first isn't really that unreasonable. So your music is not used in a way or by someone that you would in no way support!

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

    • icon
      John Fenderson (profile), 17 Sep 2014 @ 12:00pm

      Re: Take it Easy. . .

      "So your music is not used in a way or by someone that you would in no way support!"

      I understand this sentiment, but consider using copyright for this purpose to be an abuse of copyright (it's not the reason that copyright exists.) There is no concept of "moral rights" in the US. That's a very good thing.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Sep 2014 @ 5:17pm

    It finally struck me that that this is a classic case of the cycle of abuse where those who are abused eventually become abusers themselves if given the opportunity. The history of the Eagles fight against the abuses of their labels is long. When viewed in this light it becomes understandable.

    http://www.eaglesonlinecentral.com/forum/showthread.php?p=47742

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

  • icon
    TRX (profile), 17 Sep 2014 @ 3:31am

    Letterman could have used Bob Rivers' "Ticket to the Eagles," which would have been amazingly appropriate, considering...

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2014 @ 7:26am

    Reminds me of that stupid old joke

    - "Ever hear of The Eagles"?

    - "The who?"

    - "No, not The Who, The Eagles"

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


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