Post by SavoyBG Post by SavoyBG Post by SavoyBG
Group 5 is now open. Please rank these from best to worst.
Oh Babe - Lester Robertson
She's Just Old Fashioned - Goree Carter
Holy Smoke, Baby - Cadillacs
Baby Beat It - Big Duke
I understand why people like the Big Duke record, but as the saying
goes in my profession "Hacks plagiarize, artists steal," and for me the
Duke is plagiarizing.
1. Baby Beat It - Big Duke
If the one songwriter/musician here doesn't care, you shouldn't care either.
Melody is, mostly, what this issue is. I have a friend, a songwriter,
that used to do a lot of work recording in Nashville. He has a story
that he's kept with him from his experience working in the studio
there. One day when he was in the studio starting to work on
describing how one of his songs went, one of the musicians asked him
"What's it the tune to?" This is, of course, self-evident in its
meaning. As I often say to folks who say to me "that sounds like..." I
remind them in western musics we have 12 tones to use and sometimes
they get repeated--endlessly. That sometimes songs seem to be
similiar, if not same, it may very well be that the case is the
writer(s) know that the melody was a huge hit and are consciously
imitiating it or working around it. Popular music was guilty of that
often and still is. Country music was even more so. Blues is so the
same it's tough to even copyright it.
Take "Shake, Rattle and Roll." It's blues. If you slow it down to a
typical slow blues tempo and change the lyrics to any other lyric that
fits the notes, you will be doing something that sounds like hundreds
of country blues artists that came before and after it. What you are
reacting to here is not so much the structure as the style and
Sounding like something else was desirable by many creators. The law
of copyright, used to be anyway, that if one note in the first 4 bars
was different it was not a copyright violation. I will say that many
records that are presented as contest entries here have struck my ear
as the tune to some other well known song or stongly reminded me of
one. I have noticed them but it didn't have much bearing on my vote.
Nothing is created in a vacuum. Satirists also steal but get away with