It looks like Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke have unintentionally started a trend. Recently, the singer and producer were sued by Marvin Gaye’s estate for allegedly ripping off the melody of “Got To Give It Up,” in their 2013 hit “Blurred Lines.” Pharrell and Robin lost the lawsuit and were forced to pay $7.3 million to the Marvin Gaye estate.
Once the verdict was in, it didn’t take long for music industry insiders to worry. Many spoke out against the unfortunate trend that “Blurred Lines” verdict was sure to cause. Recently, rapper T.I. who was also a victim of the lawsuit made a statement defending his artistry and originality.
“I know that I’m a writer, a creator. I don’t steal from anybody creatively when I make my music. I know that, and I think that anybody with common sense is going to be able to see that when they listen to it.”
On the other hand, there are also music industry insiders who see the “Blurred Lines” verdict as an opportunity to stop the “theft” that modern artists and producers call “samples.” Recently, producer Jermaine Dupri noticed that a new song from singer Ciara was not as new as it has been marketed to be. According to Dupri, Ciara’s “I Bet” ripped off Usher’s 2004 R&B hit “U Got It Bad.”
Many of Ciara and Usher’s fans have claimed that the two songs are completely different. But if you listen to the melody in “U Got It Bad” then pay close attention to the melody of “I Bet” before Ciara begins to sing, the resemblance is undeniable. Recently, Jermaine Dupri made a reference to the “Blurred Lines” case when speaking about the Usher and Ciara issue according to MTV.
“Ciara’s new single is a complete rip-off of Usher’s ‘U Got It Bad.’ I’m clear on what I made and I’m clear on how music influences people and I’m clear on chord changes and how people move things. It might not be as evident as the ‘Blurred Lines’ situation, but I believe the same thing happened to me.”
As the producer of “U Got It Bad,” Jermaine Dupri has the right to sue Ciara and her label if he so chooses. But according to Dupri, he’s not the only producer who should be after Ciara. Jermaine has also made a claim that Ciara’s “I Bet” also ripped off Tamia’s 2004 song “Still,” which Dupri co-produced with Bryan Michael Cox and Johnta Austin. If you listen, it is almost as if the “I Bet” producer mixed the two melodies together to create what he thought would sound like a new song. But it looks like nobody is fooled.
[Photo by David Buchan/Getty Images]