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  1. #1
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    12.12.17 @ 09:42 AM
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    Default The Romantics Sue Activision Over 'Guitar Hero'

    from www.billboard.com:

    November 21, 2007

    By Susan Butler, N.Y.

    Members of rock band the Romantics have sued Activision Publishing over its
    "Guitar Hero Encore, Rocks the 80's" videogame, which uses the band's "What
    I Like About You" recorded by musicians that the band claims sound too much
    like them.

    The suit, filed yesterday in federal District Court in Detroit, claims that the sound-alike recording of their song improperly imitates the band's sound, which the members have developed since 1979. The recording makes it "virtually indistinguishable from the authentic version" and confuses consumers into believing that the band actually recorded the music and endorsed the product, the suit says.

    Guitar Hero is a series of videogames. The games play songs through audio speakers while the video monitor on a Sony PlayStation 2, which connects to a simulated guitar, shows animated characters playing guitars and color-coded musical notes. The object of the game is for the player to play the notes in the same order and at the same time as those on the monitor, receiving points for accuracy.

    A right of publicity exists in about half the United States. It protects a person's right to prevent others from using his or her identity for commercial reasons -- product endorsements, advertisements, motion pictures, photographs, etc. -- without the person's permission.

    In those states without publicity laws, privacy law may support a legal claim. Every state protects a person's privacy; sometimes use of a person's name or likeness is an invasion of privacy.

    While most states that have a right of publicity protect any person's identity, usually only people whose voices are very well known may prevent others from using or imitating their voices.

    An advertiser once employed someone to sing and imitate the voice of Bette
    Midler without her permission. A court held that this commercial use of a sound-alike version of her voice violated Midler's right of publicity

    The suit lists as plaintiffs the Romantics a/k/a Master Beat, Wally Palmar, Mike Skill and Coz Anler. It names as defendants California-based Activision, Harmonix Music Systems and Redoctane as developers, publishers or distributors of Guitar Hero. It also names Wavegroup Sound as performers of the music.

    The band members want the court to enjoin further distribution of the game and order the companies to provide an accounting of all profits. They also want compensatory and punitive damages in an unspecified amount.

    The defendant companies were not immediately available for comment.


    I guess it's their right, but c'mon already - lighten up - it's a video game. And as a band that had one big hit and then maybe a smaller hit, you'd think anything that keeps you in the positive eye would be a good thing. If you don't like the version that was included in the game, you could always join in the fun and supply either the original backing track for use in the game, or record a new one yourself. I'm not a big video game player, but still if I was a big time musician and knew this game wanted one of my tracks, I'd supply it in a heartbeat (I'd also do my own karaoke CDS), cause even in my advanced age I can still remember what it's like to be a young kid playing air guitar along to KISS or Van Halen or Cheap Trick or any of my other favourite bands, so anything I could do to keep that dream for a young kid of today, I'd do it! I'd be honoured to be in demand.

  2. #2
    Atomic Punk chefcraig's Avatar
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    Now one see's why the DVD release of "Miami Vice" and "WKRP" took so damned long. Look, I'm all for artists recieving just compensation for rendered work. Yet one would think that an "industry standard" sort of deal for compensation demands would exist by now.

    Then again, this is the music business we are dealing with, an industry that's wheelings and dealings are as murky and nebulous of those of the Mafia in Vegas in the middle of the last century.
    "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man."
    George Bernard Shaw

  3. #3
    Top Of The World FatStrat85's Avatar
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    Default

    I heard a version of VH's "You Really Got Me" on one of these games that was amazingly close to the original in every respect.

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk BREW CREW's Avatar
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    08.27.17 @ 09:39 AM
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    Default

    I think it would be a positive thing for the original bands to have their songs played on a video game. It might just increase the sales of the records the songs are on. I also agree that if they have a problem with other musicians learning their songs for a game, then they should just do it themselves. Don't sue because musicians are good enough to sound like someone else...shut up and PLAY!

  5. #5
    On Fire Eddie's Littler Monster's Avatar
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    Default

    You know, with Guitar Hero's popularity, these dimwits could have just licensed the original version of the song and made money, and not waste it on this frivolous lawsuit that they aren't going to win. It's just a ploy for some press from a one hit wonder no one's heard from since 1985.

  6. #6
    Sinner's Swing!
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by chefcraig View Post
    Now one see's why the DVD release of "Miami Vice" and "WKRP" took so damned long. Look, I'm all for artists recieving just compensation for rendered work. Yet one would think that an "industry standard" sort of deal for compensation demands would exist by now.

    Then again, this is the music business we are dealing with, an industry that's wheelings and dealings are as murky and nebulous of those of the Mafia in Vegas in the middle of the last century.
    At least the Mafia had a code of ethics (twisted as it may have been). The recording industry is soul-less.

  7. #7
    Sinner's Swing!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eddie's Littler Monster View Post
    You know, with Guitar Hero's popularity, these dimwits could have just licensed the original version of the song and made money, and not waste it on this frivolous lawsuit that they aren't going to win. It's just a ploy for some press from a one hit wonder no one's heard from since 1985.
    Say what you will about Metallica, but they were smart in that they demanded and got percentage royalties from whatever game that licensed their music. Whereas all the other bands get a flat fee, Lars and crew get royalties per sale. Yeah, they are money-grabbing Rock stars but smart ones.

  8. #8
    On Fire Warmoth's Avatar
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    Default

    They need money and this is an open door for a possible quick "cash grab". Or, atleast that is what they are thinking I am sure.
    As usual, there is a great woman behind every idiot.
    - John Lennon

  9. #9
    Forum Frontman Double Down's Avatar
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    Default

    These one-hit fuckers should be happy their name is still in front of the public. They sucked.
    .
    .
    .
    VH with Dave ('78-'84) - The best years....the "real" VH.
    VH with Sam ('86-'96) - Incredible era....."We have renamed this town 'New Halen!'.
    VH with Gary ('98) - Fucking disaster. WTF was that??
    VH with Wolf/Dave ('12-'15) - Amazing comeback. Smokin' album and tours.

  10. #10
    Sinner's Swing!
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    Default

    From what I can tell only two of those guys (Wally Palmer and Mike Skill) were actually in the Romantics when "What I Like About You" was recorded. That song is listed as a group effort. Seems like a publicity stunt to me. They'll be spending more for lawyers fees than what they what they could get if they won.

    By the way, though "What I Like About You" is the song we all remember, the song, "Talking In Your Sleep" was actually their moneymaker.
    Mr. Horseradish courtesy of the International Horseradish Council and Brett.

  11. #11
    Baluchitherium Mikey Metalhead's Avatar
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    one hit wonders who need some cash,,,, they should go crawl back under their rock
    I SURVIVED TEXAS LINKERS WEEKEND I, II, III, IV and VI and VII.barely made it to VIII time to slow down
    I musta had a broken middle finger for V
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  12. #12
    Sinner's Swing!
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    Default

    A form of the Romantics (with the original songwriters) is still a touring entity. They probably took over the Ribfest circuit recently vacated by a certain lead-singer...
    Mr. Horseradish courtesy of the International Horseradish Council and Brett.

  13. #13
    Sinner's Swing! the_atomic_punks_rule's Avatar
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    12.20.16 @ 03:09 PM
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    Default

    I am suing too...the 80's Guitar Hero game blows......guitar hero 3 sucks too because the guitar comes in 2 pieces and has connection issues...I feel like Ed probably does sometimes on stage....I mean seriously how can I rock out on a small plastic guitar with colored buttons if the neck always comes apart at the body....for Christ's sake, TECH!!!

  14. #14
    Baluchitherium sisca's Avatar
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    Default

    eh, they were a gay band anyway.
    why they were even on guitar hero is beyond me.
    """"\//-/""""


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    then ill build it from the mexican side. -my reply.

  15. #15
    Atomic Punk LLFHS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sisca View Post
    eh, they were a gay band anyway.
    why they were even on guitar hero is beyond me.
    I'm with you.

    Stupid, overplayed song....would never play it even if I owned the game. Even the Village People thinks they look gay.
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