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Topic: Ripoff Music

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  1. #1

    Ripoff Music

    So ESPN just played a commercial for the upcoming Pro Bowl. The music they played under the ad was so obviously a knock-off of Williams main theme from Hook that whoever did it should be ashamed to take payment for the job. He barely bothered to do more than change a few notes in the main theme.

    I\'ve actually noticed that the NFL is often guilty of this. A lot of the NFL Films music is bad knockoffs of famous music.

    What is the story here? How legal is it to basically duplicate someone elses music, change a few notes, and then basically sell it? The Pro Bowl music was identical to Hook. Same tempo, same orchestration, same everything, just with a few different notes. This seems incredibly taseless, but obviously someone is getting paid to write it, and they are actually hiring an orchestra to record it.

  2. #2

    Re: Ripoff Music

    Well ...... sometimes producers ask for a certain \'sound\'. And sometimes the video is cut to a piece and it often times backs a composer into a corner. Either make it sound like the temp track, or the producers will find someone who will.

    And only melodies can hold a copyright.

    Not to mention, Williams has made a great career of \'re-purposing\' the melodies and themes of the great composers of the past. There are several well documented discourses on Williams and his ability to \'borrow\'. Ask any disgruntled university music composition professor.

    Besides, EVERYTHING has been done. Only so much you can do with 12 tones.

    SWL

  3. #3

    Re: Ripoff Music

    Yea, I always hear Dvorak\'s 9th, 3rd movement when listening to one of the main themes in StarWars [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

    ...and speaking of Ripoffs: SOCOM II Theme (EA) by Inon Zur! I love The Rock and the old MV sound but that is TOO close for my taste, actually. Harmonics, arrangements and melodies....

    But as SWL said already... as a composer you are often trapped having to do what the producer wants.

    Marc

  4. #4

    Re: Ripoff Music

    Originally posted by MarcDerell:
    Yea, I always hear Dvorak\'s 9th, 3rd movement when listening to one of the main themes in StarWars [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">That\'s nothing. Can anyone spot the famous JW theme in Stravinsky\'s \'Rite of Spring\'?

  5. #5

    Re: Ripoff Music

    Hehe... and here you thought he\'s a genius [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]

    But on the other hand... I\'m \"borrowing\" as well but try to mix different things from different people alltogether, add a few potions of my own thoughts and voila it\'s not really a clone anymore [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img] More or less unique - one might hope, at least [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img]

    But nowadays you really can talk about an \"Attack of the Clone Tracks\" [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

  6. #6

    Re: Ripoff Music

    It\'s easy to rip off the classics, but composers have to be careful about ripping off more contemporary artists. Remember the Ghostbusters scandal?

    Songwriter, Ray Parker Jr., was asked to write a song that sounded like the temp music the producers had been using: I Want a New Drug by Huey Lewis.

    Parker comes up with the Ghostbusters theme which is a pretty obvious rip. Gets sued. Settles out of court.

    Hasn\'t been heard from since.

  7. #7

    Re: Ripoff Music

    Originally posted by SWL:
    Well ......

    And only melodies can hold a copyright.


    SWL
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">I\'ve often thought about that, is that really true? I mean there are some popular melodies in public domain that have had thousands of arrangements to them; wouldn\'t someone be violating the rights of another if they \"copied\" someelses arrangement to that melody ?

    Rick

  8. #8

    Re: Ripoff Music

    Originally posted by MarcDerell:
    Hehe... and here you thought he\'s a genius [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]

    But on the other hand... I\'m \"borrowing\" as well but try to mix different things from different people alltogether, add a few potions of my own thoughts and voila it\'s not really a clone anymore [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img] More or less unique - one might hope, at least [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img]

    But nowadays you really can talk about an \"Attack of the Clone Tracks\" [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">Actually, I never meant to imply that Williams isn\'t a fine composer. Like anyone else his work will be a product of the music he has listened to and admired. I think \"Jaws\" in particular might have cut it a bit close, but, come on ... how many Russian folk melodies did Stravinsky draw on for his music.

    Williams is great at writing original works that support the films he\'s scoring. That his music calls to mind earlier works is part of his appeal.

  9. #9
    andyt
    Guest

    Re: Ripoff Music

    Originally posted by robgb:
    It\'s easy to rip off the classics, but composers have to be careful about ripping off more contemporary artists. Remember the Ghostbusters scandal?

    Songwriter, Ray Parker Jr., was asked to write a song that sounded like the temp music the producers had been using: I Want a New Drug by Huey Lewis.

    Parker comes up with the Ghostbusters theme which is a pretty obvious rip. Gets sued. Settles out of court.

    Hasn\'t been heard from since.
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">Thats interesting.
    I seem to remember them being sued for ripping off a one-hit-wonder \"Pop Music\" by a band called M. Thats what they sued for in the UK anyways ... maybe they sued for something else elsewhere [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]

  10. #10

    Re: Ripoff Music

    Just for the record, I love Williams\' music and I think he\'s damn great at what he does.

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