I haven’t done a copyright post for a few weeks, but the Google Alerts each day come up with some of the most WTF moments.
First up, is Eminem’s music publisher is suing Spotify because somehow Spotify is playing songs on its service without the proper permissions from one of the biggest artists.
Is Eight Mike serious?
I guess they are. Read the article here.
Eminem is streamed a lot on Spotify and somehow, Eight Mile (which is basically Eminem) reckons Spotify doesn’t have a license to have his songs on the service.
One of his songs” ‘Till I Collapse” has 702 million streams, so I wonder when or at what stage in those hundreds of million streams did the music publisher realise that Spotify didn’t have a license.
And there is so much talk about Eminem’s most popular track “Lose Yourself”, which to me is a rip off from “Kashmir” by Led Zeppelin. The Am to F transition over a droning pedal tone is not original or unique at all.
What seems to have happened here is that Eminem has seen how other artists have made their own special deals with Spotify and he’s thinking, “I want a piece of that pie”, so let’s drum up some BS rubbish to get Spotify to pay me more.
And while I am on the topic of payments, here is a win for the artist. Ennio Morricone, who composed some massive soundtracks back in the 70s won back the right to some of his songs from the label. But he had to go to court and to appeal to get his songs back.
Morricone gave up his Copyrights for a large upfront payment and low royalties in the late seventies, however his music became very popular from the 90’s onwards.
Metallica kept using his music as an intro to all of their concerts and suddenly the movies from the 70’s in which he composed music for, had a new lease of life in the 90’s with DVD releases and what not, but the composer got nothing.
The labels of course argued these are works for hire and that the artist is not entitled to his works.
And that large upfront payment the label would have made in the late 70’s would have been recouped tenfold over the last 30 years, while the artist would have had that just one payment.
And finally, we have the US Government siding with an artist on a copyright suit.
As people are aware, Plant and Page were accused and then cleared of copyright infringement in June 2016 over the opening bars of “Stairway To Heaven” and the song “Taurus” from the band Spirit.
The decision was appealed by the heirs and the judge agreed so it’s going back to court.
So should the Government pick a side here, especially when the whole mess of copyrights is because previous Governments kept on changing and extending the terms of Copyright to suit their back pockets.