Wednesday, April 26, 2017


In Music History

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2007"Monster Mash" singer Bobby "Boris" Pickett at age 69 of complications from leukemia.
2004Billy Joel, who is much better behind a piano than at the wheel of a car, gets in another car accident - his third in two years.
2003The parents of the late Doors frontman Jim Morrison sue the remaining members for touring with a new singer as "The Doors 21st Century" using the band's image and logo.
2000Papa Roach releases the album Infest, a nu-metal milestone with the hits "Last Resort" and "Broken Home."
2000Eric Clapton is reunited with his former Derek and the Dominos keyboard player Bobby Whitlock for their first performance together in 29 years. The setting is the London-based BBC TV series Later With Jools Holland.
1999Funk percussionist Larry Troutman (Zapp), age 54, fatally shoots his brother and bandmate Roger Troutman, age 47, outside a recording studio in Dayton, Ohio, before turning the gun on himself. With no known witnesses, the motive for the murder-suicide is unclear, but family members suggest conflict over finances.
1995Ginger Rogers, Academy Award-winning actress and longtime dance partner of Fred Astaire, dies at age 83 of a heart attack.
1994Eagles play the first of two identical shows at Burbank Studios for their appearance on MTV Unplugged, which will promote their upcoming reunion tour and album Hell Freezes Over.
1993Legendary album artist Stanley "Mouse" Miller, designer of Grateful Dead's "skull and roses" logo, has his upcoming liver transplant financed by the band.
1990A London auction house sells the Fender Stratocaster on which Jimi Hendrixplayed the US national anthem at Woodstock for $295,000.
1985Exodus release their first studio album Bonded By Blood.
1985The musical Big River, based on Mark Twain's work and featuring a score by Roger Miller, opens on Broadway. Miller would go on to win a Tony Award for the music.
1981Denny Laine leaves the trio Wings, essentially leaving Paul McCartney a solo act once more.
1980Pop singer Jacob Underwood (O-Town) is born in El Cajon, California.
1978Bob Dylan records "Changing Of The Guards."
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Michael Bolton Found Guilty Of Ripping Off The Isley Brothers

A jury rules that Michael Bolton's 1991 hit "Love Is a Wonderful Thing" plagiarizes The Isley Brothers 1966 song of the same name and award $5.4 million in damages, the largest ever in a music plagiarism case.
The Isley Brothers song was released as a single in 1966 and bubbled under on the Hot 100 at #110. Running just 1:50, it is an upbeat track with a simple message about the wonders of love and a sweet sax solo. Bolton's song, which reached #4 in 1991, runs 4:43 and has a far more complex arrangement. The songs share a title and lyrical sentiment, but not much else. Still, a jury sides with The Isley Brothers and awards the outsized damages.

Bolton is particularly vexed since he insists he has never heard the Isley's song. He has covered soul classics though ("Georgia On My Mind," "(Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay"), which may have convinced the jury that he was looking to appropriate another as his own work.

The case is similar to the "My Sweet Lord"/"He's So Fine" case, where George Harrison was found guilty of "unconscious plagiarism" of the Chiffons hit and ordered to pay $1.6 million. But at least "He's So Fine" was a hit. The Isley Brothers song didn't appear on any of their studio albums, was rarely played on the radio, and was likely never performed live. It would have been difficult for Bolton to find the song even if he wanted to hear it, and he's never on record mentioning The Isley Brothers as an influence or as one of his favorite artists. As for the title, there are over 100 songs called "Love Is A Wonderful Thing" that have been copyrighted.

Bolton appeals the case, but the judgment is upheld. He takes it all the way to the Supreme Court, which refuses to hear it.

Bolton isn't the last songwriter to get screwed by the system: In 2015 the writers of "Blurred Lines" were ordered to pay $7.3 million for using elements found in Marvin Gaye's song "Got To Give It Up."

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