My heart aches with the news this morning of a jury awarding Marvin Gaye’s family with $7.4 million to be paid up by Robin Thicke & Pharrell Williams over their song “Blurred Lines.” It aches, because it messes with my trust and hero worship of the creative process, which I have always held in the highest regard.
I’m not a huge fan of Robin Thicke, but Omg! – Pharrell Williams is another story. I have so admired this artist and what he has done with the popularity of the song “Happy.” (Check out 24hoursofhappy.com) I admire his skill of crafting a song, his global awareness, his style, and his pure raw talent.
There are only 8 notes in a major scale, so it is bound to happen that musicians write songs that resemble other songs. According to Pharrell & Robin Thicke, “Blurred Lines” merely pays homage to Marvin Gaye’s “Got To Give It Up.” The jurors in their case, however, did not agree, and now they need to pay their homage by paying up an awful lot of money. I feel so let down by this.
When you listen to the two songs back to back, however, “Blurred Lines” really does seem like a complete rip off. You be the judge.