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The ‘blurred lines’ of music

16th March 2015

As it is announced that the Gaye estate has been awarded 7.4 million US dollars in a settlement of copyright infringement, the music industry has looked into the “blurred lines” that lie in pop music.

Richard S. Busch is the man who holds the partner lawyer job that won the huge settlement for the family of Marvin Gaye after persuading a jury that Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams’ “Blurred Lines” copied elements of Gaye’s 1977 hit “Got to Give It Up”. Busch, who comes from Nashville firm King & Ballow, has already earned a successful reputation in this area having worked on the Bridgeport Music v. Dimension Films and F.B.T. Productions v. Aftermath Records cases.

Janis Gaye, former wife of Marvin Gaye, said of Busch and his legal work in this article, “I’ve never met anyone like Richard Busch, and that’s fine with me.” His skill in winning cases of this kind whilst remaining distant from the centre of the music industry was one of the reasons he was hired.

Despite the Gaye estate winning the high-profile case, this has left the music industry as a whole concerned over what this could mean for the future of pop music. This case is not the first example of copyright disputes in music, with Sam Smith forced to give Tom Petty a songwriting credit on his song Stay With Me earlier this year.

Image Credit: Pat David (