Before GoldieBlox, Beasties plundered the "Girls" melody (fair and square)

While we're on the subject of unauthorized use of musical works: here's a timely (and fully rockin') reminder that the Beastie Boys plundered the melody of The Isley Brothers' Shout for Girls.

Beastie Boys Vs Isley Brothers - Girls Shout (Martinn Bootleg) (Thanks, Hondo!)

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  1. I wouldn't call that stealing the melody, I'd call it copying the phrasing.

  2. Cory, you do know the story about how The Isley Brothers ripped off the melody, lyrics AND phrasing of "SHOUT" from Navin "Pig Eye" Johnson who was born a poor White Black boy in Mississippi before inventing the OPTI-GRAB, becoming a millionaire and then losing his riches in a lawsuit? Navin "Pig Eye" Johnson also happens to write all of Lady Gaga's songs under the pseudonym "Madonna"

  3. OK, I've officially given up trying to understand Cory's position on intellectual property. If there's a consistent philosophy here, I'm not seeing it.

  4. I think John Hartfords words of wisdom are quite relevant here.

    "I tried real hard to make this song not sound like some other song I've written before.
    If I did it's because my style and style is based on limitations.

    I tried real hard not to make this song sound like some other song some other singer-songwriter might have written before.
    And if I did, that's 'cause it's music, and music is based on repetition."

  5. If saying 'Girls' on the downbeat of the beginning of the chorus counts, then maybe. But that is the only melodic material that's plundered. While the chord progression implied by the bells is the same progression, the bell melody is AFAIK original.

    There's just no comparison between the amount of lifting GoldieBlox did from 'Girls' and the Beasties did from the Isley Brothers. Goldieblox lifted: vocal rhythm, phrasing and rhyme scheme; bell melody wholesale along with idiomatic vibrato; dry drum pattern in exact same rhythm. Beasties: chord progression, monosyllable on downbeat.

    As the 'Axis of Awesome' will show you, there is little innovation in the world of chord progression -- and in this case it's just two chords.

    Making the Beasties out to be "just as bad" in this case is reaching.

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