A to Z of Making It, Copyright, Music, My Stories, Piracy

Under My Copyright

I haven’t done one of these Copyright posts for a while because there has been too much information going around and I couldn’t decide what to write about. Like GNR suing an hardcore fan for leaking demos of “Chinese Democracy” or Kate Perry being accused of copying an artist that no one has heard off.

But then Public Domain 2020 happened and suddenly I was interested in Copyright stories again.

So I started with something close to home.

Australia was once on the US watchlist for countries who consumed content illegally. So the US government pressured our government to get tough on illegal downloads. But everyone just kept on saying, offer enough legal alternatives at the right price and people will take it up. So is it any real surprise that Australians are now taking up these legal options.

Remember that Copyright was created for the artists to have an incentive to create more works. According to Blink-182s Tom DeLonge, this means selling your publishing rights to a corporation for a hefty fee. Of course he’s not the only one. All of our favorite and popular artists have done it. This one is strange because DeLonge even said “he now has an incentive to create more”. And I’m thinking, really.

But the best one is The Rolling Stones along with Abkco Music and Records, dropping 75 rare recordings onto YouTube, hours before they were going to enter the Public Domain in Europe. Actually it was Abkco that uploaded them to YouTube.

And just in case people tried to copy the recordings, Abkco added a dial-tone to obscure the sound and after 24 hours moved the recordings from the public site to a private, invite-only site.

Basically if Abkco didn’t release the recordings within 50 years after they were made, they would lose the copyright. The Beatles and Bob Dylan have done something similar in the past. And if a YouTube post is deemed eligible as a release then Abkco’s copyright term will last until the end of 2089. I guess Abkco has an incentive to create. There’s nothing better than a corporation have the copyrights of a song for 120 years.

And you know the saying if you have a hit expect a writ. Miley Cyrus released a song called “We Can’t Stop” and it went to Number 2 on the charts. It was kept out of number 1 by “Blurred Lines” from Robin Thicke.

Both songs got served with writs and have settled. Cyrus settled before it went to verdict and Thicke at trial with the Gaye family.

The song that was number 3 on the charts better watch out. Someone is after them.

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A to Z of Making It, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

Guitar Heroes and MTV

The huge success of EVH and Randy Rhoads from Southern California in the late seventies and early eighties, created an entire scene of guitarists in LA’s Sunset Strip.

Most of them were classed as imitators.

In a different era only a few of these guitarists would have made it. But these guitarists had something that no other guitarist had before them.

MTV.

A new market was created by music television that needed artists with a “god like” physical look and “love making” stage moves. And in order to satisfy the masses, MTV told the labels to go and get these artists. And major labels signed em in droves.

Dressed up as characters from “The Rocky Horror Show” and big hair, the anti-alpha look went against the alpha style lyrics of sexual domination and standing your ground.

Suddenly, everyone who wanted to be an artist was having their own fifteen minutes of fame contract thrown at them.

MTV went into business with heavy metal and the biggest beneficiaries were vocalists and guitarists.

And Lemmy once said, “the essence of rock and roll is rebellion” and “the only reason for rock and roll to exist is to be the soundtrack for the movie of teenage angst and anger”.

And there was a lot of teenage angst and anger. We snapped up the records and concert tickets and T-shirt’s at an unbelievable pace, fueled by the over exposure that MTV created, along with the various magazines.

Guitarists like Vito Bratta, George Lynch, Warren DeMartini/Robin Crosby, Carlos Cavazo, CC DeVille, Jake E Lee, Joey Allen/Erik Turner, Traci Gunns, Mark Kendall, Vinnie Vincent and Tom Keifer all had moments in the spotlight.

Artists like Lynch and Lee had success with multiple projects, while Keifer had an unbelievable ability to take old blues influences and turn them into popular rock songs. But he got lumped in with the rest of the hair Metal artists.

Warren DeMartini also got classed into this hair metal category but he was an outlier and Vito Bratta for all of his abilities couldn’t shake the EVH clone comparisons and a vocalist who couldn’t shake the DLR and Vince Neil comparisons.

It’s a very subjective viewpoint but for the other guitarists, did they really produce an album’s worth of great material.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

Bullshit

How good was Ricky Gervais’s intro host speech at the Golden Globes?

As he said, he doesn’t care with offending people, calling out Hollywood and the film industry for the monsters its created like Harvey Weinstein and the secrecy for all of its sins, plus the College pay scandal and even Jeffrey Epstein And Prince Andrew got linked to Hollywood and DiCaprio (because of his young girlfriend).

And the best part of the speech, was when he said, “so if you win an award tonight, don’t use your platform to make a political speech. You’re in no position to lecture the public about anything. You know nothing about the real world. Most of you spent less time in school than Greta Thunberg. So if you win, come up, accept your little award tonight, thank your agent and your God and fuck off. No one cares about your views on politics or culture.”

That’s right, no one gives a fuck about what these actors think.

Of course, Gervais is a comedian and his job is to make jokes. But he doesn’t care to play with their rules.

He plays by his rule. If he works with those people or if he doesn’t, he doesn’t care. He kept repeating that, he doesn’t care. And a person who has nothing to lose, is free. That is freedom, when you have nothing to lose, you are free to say and do what you want. And he calls out the industry on their bullshit.

I say the politics
Well they’re lunatics
They say it’s right
But we know it’s wrong
Spread the word

It’s all just
Bullshit to me

We used to call it once upon a time.

It’s a forgotten song from Australia’s Choirboys. Gervais would have a field day with that band name.

Most people in the world would know the Choirboys for their hit song “Run To Paradise”. Then again, maybe not, “Run To Paradise” came out in 1987, which in today’s fast paced world, a long time ago. I remember playing the song “Breaking The Law” in a cover band in the 90’s, almost 17 years from when the original came out and people thought it was an original of mine.

These days, we still like to call out the bullshit, however with social media and the need for everyone to be liked, we are hesitant. Maybe not, Ricky Gervais.

On Twitter, I see Zoltan Bathory get into a few exchanges with followers/trolls on his political and social views. Having come from a dictatorship to the U.S, he is passionate for freedom.

Robb Flynn calls out fellow musicians for racism and he gets his life threatened. Sebastian Bach talks about climate change and the Twitter trolls come out to shoot him down.

Dee Snider wrote the anthem for calling out the BS in life. This is what artists did well. The message was in the songs. Hence the reason why we connected. We need some more of it these days.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

Masters And Slaves

Track 3 of the stellar “In Rock We Trust” album. The intro gets me playing air guitar.

It’s such a dirty game
That it fills you with rage
There’s only kings and queens
And you’re a pawn in their game

So much truth in these words.

Money, security and relationships are keeping us up at night. If we borrow money, we become even a bigger pawn in the game. The decks are stacked against hard work. They’ve always been.

Of masters and slaves
We’re divided that way
Are you a master or slave?
Do you rule or obey?

We are born, our parents rule and we obey.

We go to school and our teachers rule, while we obey.

We go to work and the boss rules, while we obey.

We get married, and the other partner rules while we obey.

If we want to participate in society, we need to play by its rules of working to get paid and taking out loans for property and so forth.

When they tell you it’s the home of the free
Well, they must be insane

Who would have thought that living in a free country would be so expensive?

And who would have thought that living in a free country, that we would be under so much surveillance than a communist nation ever did, all in the name of safety.

‘Cause it’s dog eat dog from morning ’till night
And only the strongest survive
It’s the law of the jungle, only winners have rights
The losers relinquish their lives

There is no story about the losers. Only the winners. And they re-write history to suit their point of view.

So, you think you’re made it
When you have your fortune and fames
But don’t you realize
Oh, someone’s running the game

These lyrics reference life, experience, skin in the game. It’s not all about being a red hot live wire, wanting to feel the noise.

How many artists lost all the money they made when their career and the public acceptance of their music started to fade and their trusted label, manager and publisher ripped em off.

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A to Z of Making It, Music, My Stories

Purpose

I’ve been watching “Peaky Blinders” on Netflix. My wife is a fan and I move in and out of episodes which is okay with me.

I like the format of six, 1 hour episodes a season. It keeps the focus on the story and there is no filler episodes.

There is a scene in season 3 I think, where the main character was unsure if he should keep going with all the criminal activities, in an attempt to have enough cash to go legit (which is always a gangster’s dream, to turn legal from being illegal).

So he went to shovel shit for a little bit to see what it felt like to be doing it because if he wasn’t doing all the criminal stuff, this is the job he would have had. Obviously he didn’t like it and returned to his illegal businesses with the hope to get enough cash to be legit.

The TV show “Power” is built on a similar premise, in which the main character James St Patrick attempts to go legit from distributing drugs. Even the third “Godfather” movie had the same premise, with Al Pacino’s character attempting to go legit, which all comes crashing down on him at the end, when old enemies come back for some retribution. Even “Sons Of Anarchy” had Jax trying to go legit before it all went to hell.

And I was thinking about the character in “Peaky Blinders” (who acted the excellent “Scarecrow” character in Christopher Nolan’s “Batman” trilogy) and I was thinking how in the show he has his purpose and he just keeps doing everything he can to achieve his purpose while trying to protect the family.

Whenever the purpose is in doubt he would go back and do what he would have been doing before he started on his journey, just to see if he liked it. If he didn’t, that was enough information he needed to stay with the purpose.

And at no stage does he forget about his purpose.

So whenever the purpose is in doubt go back and do what you would have been doing before you started on your journey and see if you like it.

If you don’t like it, then stay with the purpose. And remember, everything in life is a lifers game. When to change and start a new project is the hard part.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

The Call Of Ktulu

Another game changer track, a progressive 7 minute instrumental, with a title taken from the works of HP Lovecraft and his mythical monster.

And death was the unifying theme on “Ride The Lightning” except for “Escape”, a Thin Lizzy like cut which had defiant social lyrics like “Life is my own to live my own way”. The same message could be heard on songs like “Stand Up And Shout” and “We’re Not Gonna Take It”.

“The Call Of Ktulu” has got a bit of everything, written mostly by Dave Mustaine in his Dux of the Year contribution however the publishing will show Hetfield, Ulrich, Burton, Mustaine.

And it’s got the embryonic riff of what will become “Hanger 18” in Megadeth many years later, based around a chromatic ascending riff similar to “Kashmir” from Led Zeppelin.

The songs structure is orchestral like and it’s full of ascending and descending scales, chromatic lines which give the song an air of menace and time changes.

The intro alone moves from a classical inspired Dm arpeggio riff to the Am Tritone arpeggio riff and back to the Dm “Hangar 18” riff.

And the “Ride The Lightning” album was the first time that Cliff was really writing with the band, and this partnership would come to fruition on the follow up album “Master Of Puppets” album.

Rumors existed that Hetfield didn’t write any lyrics because he never actually read any of Lovecraft’s works or that the song that appears on the album was a throwaway jam from the Mustaine era, with Mustaine actually playing, because the album was over budget and needed an extra track.

And the various companies printing the LPs kept spelling it wrong on various pressings. “The Cat Of Ktulu” and “The Call Of The Ktulu”.

Regardless, enjoy a brilliant track which was made even more menacing when Michael Kamen wanted to open the “S&M” show with it many years later, which gave the song a new lease of life and people once again became interested in Metallica’s back catalogue.

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My Stories

Fires

Since September, 2019, the land has been burning.

The photo below shows the fires burning along the East Coast at a macro level as of this morning, 5 January, 2020.

When you zoom in, you will see Wollongong, one of Australia’s steel city is still okay. That’s home for me.

The Red means it’s out of control, the blue means wait for advice, the yellow means watch and act and the white means it’s not applicable anymore.

At the places that have burned, I have holidayed there. Just recently, I spent New Years Eve 2018 in Bateman’s Bay. The area is still without power and people are in evacuation centers.

I have friends who lost property in Talbingo.

And if you read any publication from “The Murdoch Family” it’s like the fires have never happened. Rupert and his editors are no different than any extremist terrorist organisation. The news outlets Murdoch controls spread lies for their financial gain. While the whole world reported about the fires in Australia, Murdoch’s newspaper in Australia didn’t think it was a big problem. Check out this Guardian article.

And our Prime Minister has shown how incompetent and unfit he is to lead this country.

But hey, he’s supported by Murdoch’s stooges at the news outlets and he can do nothing wrong. If people yell at him for his lack of leadership, the Murdoch newspaper reports he was assaulted.

If people refuse to shake the PM’s hand, the Murdoch newspaper reported he was disrespected by feral people. Those same people voted in his government and now when they question him, they are not people in his eyes that deserve an answer.

And to sum up our PM’s incompetence;

He has no real heartfelt connection with the people and he doesn’t know how to connect and communicate with his people.

For the election campaign last year, he spoke to the Australian people about their budgets and what the opposition party would do to those budgets if they won, so they voted him in when all the Polls said he had no chance. When our wallets are affected, we take notice and speaking at a macro level he’s okay with that.

But when a volunteer tells you he hasn’t eaten all day, instead of sitting down and having a meal with him at a micro level and talking about nothing, he walks away, leaves the volunteer to get on with it.

I guess all of the people on the street are ferals, Mr Prime Minister.

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