Katy Perry Forced to Pay Millions for Copying Christian Rap Song
Katy Perry seems to have forgotten a golden rule - don't take what doesn't belong to you!
A judge ordered Katy Perry and her record label to hand over $2.7 million for making a song that was too similar to a Christian rap song.
The lawsuit that led to the financial judgment claimed that Perry’s 2013 hit “Dark Horse” copied Christian rapper Marcus Gray’s 2009 song “Joyful Noise.”
Check out the songs in question. What do you think?
While Katy Perry‘s version is slower, one can see how a jury would think they’re similar. The standard of a song getting determined by the courts as “copied” music seems tenable at best. But this isn’t the first time it’s happened and won’t be the last.
Musicians sued for copied music.
The issue of copied music isn’t a new one.
It was in 1970 when George Harrison release the number one hit, “My Sweet Lord.” A few months after the song’s release, Harrison was sued for copyright infringement by the publisher of “He’s So Fine,” a 1963 hit for the Chiffons.
In 1976 a judge found Harrison had “subconsciously” copied the Chiffons’ song. Despite the judge saying Harrison did so without intent, he created a song virtually identical to another.
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Eleven years later, Desmond Child, the co-writer of the Bon Jovi hit, “You Give Love A Bad Name,” sued former Go-Go’s star, Belinda Carlisle, for copyright infringement after the release of her solo hit, “Heaven Is A Place On Earth.”
A judge agreed and Child, as well as the other songwriters, earn a portion of the royalties from Carlisle’s song. Ironically, Child stole from a song himself, singer Bonnie Tyler’s 1986 flop, “If You Were a Woman and I Was a Man” to create “You Give Love A Bad Name.”
The music industry is a notoriously cut-throat business and musicians often feel short-changed for their efforts and creativity. While it’s often impossible to know whether one artist has intentionally or inadvertently ripped off another, juries get the final say.
Hopefully, Marcus Gray uses his big payout to advance the message of Jesus more than Katy Perry, a former Christian artist, has.