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Thread: Men At Work

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    Atomic Punk
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    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
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    Men At Work

    WOW... 28+ years later?!?!?

    This week Australian Federal Court judge Peter Jacobson ruled that the flute passage in Men At Work's popular new wave ode to life in the lower hemisphere bears a distinctive resemblance to "Kookaburra Sits In The Old Gum Tree," an Aussie children's folk tune written 75 years ago by schoolteacher teacher Marion Sinclair. "I have come to the view that the flute riff in 'Down

    Music company Larrikin, which acquired the rights to "Kookaburra" nearly two decades ago, filed the suit after hearing a snippet of "Down Under" played on an Australian quiz show last year. And now, after this week's ruling, Larrikin stands to collect a substantial amount of royalties (somewhere between 40 and 60 percent) from Men At Work, "Down Under" songwriters Colin Hay and Ron Strykert, and record labels Sony BMG and EMI.

    "It's a big win for the underdog," Larrikin's lawyer Adam Simpson told Australian reporters--although, sadly, Marion Sinclair will not be seeing any of that money (she passed away long ago), and neither will any of her heirs, since the song's rights were sold to Larrikin in 1990 after Sinclair's death.
    After the surprising ruling, Men At Work singer and songwriter Colin Hay published a lengthy and very emotional statement in Australia's Herald Sun. "The copyright of 'Kookaburra' is owned and controlled by Larrikin Music Publishing, more specifically by a man named Norm Lurie. Larrikin Music Publishing is owned by a multi-national corporation called Music Sales. I only mention this as Mr. Lurie is always banging on about how he's the underdog, the little guy. Yet, he is part of a multi-national corporation just like EMI Music Publishing. It's all about money, make no mistake," he wrote.

    You know, Colin has a point.

    "It is indeed true, that Greg Ham (not a writer of the song) unconsciously referenced two bars of 'Kookaburra' on the flute, during live shows after he joined the band in 1979, and it did end up in the Men At Work recording," Hay conceded. "When Men At Work released the song 'Down Under' through CBS Records (now Sony Music), in 1982, it became extremely successful. It was, and continues to be, played literally millions of times all over the world, and it is no surprise that in over 20 years, no one noticed the reference to 'Kookaburra.'"

    Well, Colin certainly has a point, there, too.

    "Mr. Lurie claims to care only about protecting the copyright of Marion Sinclair, who sadly has passed away. I don't believe him. It may well be noted, that Marion Sinclair herself never made any claim that we had appropriated any part of her song 'Kookaburra,' and she wrote it, and was most definitely alive, when Men At Work's version of 'Down Under' was a big hit. Apparently she didn't notice either."

    Again, Colin makes a good point.

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/men...-1225826917098




    "This outcome will have no real impact upon the relationship that I have with our song 'Down Under,' for we are connected forever...'Down Under' lives in my heart, and may perhaps live in yours. I claim it, and will continue to play it, for as long as you want to hear it." - Colin Hay
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.Ē -- Gen. George S. Patton

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    Baluchitherium
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    My cousin pointed that out to me when the song came out. We both learned "Kookaburra" in music class the year before; it was in my favorite elementary school book of all time, "Exploring Music". I always thought that flute part was cool how it referenced "Kookaburra".

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    12.16.17 @ 09:42 AM
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    It may have referenced it but I don't think by any means it was the basis for the whole song. Even if it that passage was the basis for 90% of the song like "Under Pressure" was for Vanilla Ice's song(and it clearly wasn't), there should be some sort of statute of limitations for which someone should be able to pursue a claim on copyright infringement. Waiting 27 years to bitch about it is sketchy.

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    that's insane.

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    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.16.17 @ 10:47 PM
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    Seems dumb 28 years later.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brett View Post
    Seems dumb 28 years later.
    Cash grab...
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.Ē -- Gen. George S. Patton

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    06.14.13 @ 10:39 PM
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    Stupid, trivial, no-class garbage to attempt this sort of thing. Here in the States, YES, that's par for the course. Sue, sue, sue....get over it! BTW, I thought Men At Work had some cool tunes all by themselves.

  8. #8
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    12.17.17 @ 12:07 AM
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    Totally. They only pursued it after it appeared as a question in a game show down here a couple of years ago.
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    Baluchitherium
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    Eddie Van Halen just phoned Alex: "Get over here man! We have to listen to every record anyone's put out since '78."
    Posted from yo' mama's house.


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    12.14.17 @ 05:57 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by voivod View Post
    Cash grab...
    No doubt
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by VegasVic View Post
    Eddie Van Halen just phoned Alex: "Get over here man! We have to listen to every record anyone's put out since '78."

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    Men at Work was a pretty good band. Damn shame they gotta put up with this now...
    Stay out of it, dude.


    I am Van Halen.

  13. #13
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    03.10.14 @ 08:22 PM
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    its all about money.
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    12.11.17 @ 05:55 PM
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    That is silly. 28 years later?!

    I was listening to that song two days ago, I downloaded some of my Business As Usual CD to my Ipod. They were a good band.
    Right Now you're reading my post!


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    Quote Originally Posted by voivod View Post
    Cash grab...
    What's left of it anyway. Somehow I don't think Colin and the boys are driving Bentleys around the outback lately.
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