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Exclusive: Will Music Infringement Lawsuits Become Excessive?



Just one week after a jury ruled that Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke’s megahit “Blurred Lines” infringed on Marvin Gaye’s 1977 classic, “Got to Give It Up,” Williams is opening up about the ruling.

“The verdict handicaps any creator out there who is making something that might be inspired by something else,” he told the Financial Times. “This applies to fashion, music, design … anything. If we lose our freedom to be inspired we’re going to look up one day and the entertainment industry as we know it will be frozen in litigation. This is about protecting the intellectual rights of people who have ideas.”

Following the major win of Gaye’s estate, Jermaine Dupri came forward claiming that Ciara’s new track “I Bet” is a “complete rip-off of Usher’s ‘U Got It Bad.’” Tom Petty also recently claimed that Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me” was similar to his hit track “Won’t Back Down;” in which Smith agreed to give Petty writing credit and royalties.

Considering the recent string of infringement cases, Pharrell raises the question best: Will the entertainment industry as we know it “be frozen in litigation?” HipHollywood caught up with attorney Mitra Ahouraian of Ahouraian Law to help shed some light from a legal perspective.

“The copyright infringement cases are question of fact that’s decided by a jury. That doesn’t create law. Decisions from a judge create law,” Ahouraian explained. “So from a legal standpoint because they are decided on a case by case basis we don’t really have so much of a concern in reality.”

She added, “The influence versus the actual infringement comes down to how similar the two [songs] are. Again, how similar the two are are not only what sounds similar to us as people who aren’t necessarily musicians, but also the expert of musicologists and the likelihood that two people came up with a very similar song or very similar piece of art.”

There are now new reports claiming that the Gaye family, who was awarded over $7 million in the case, is now planning on blocking the sales and distribution of the song.


Exclusive: First Look At Brandy On Season 2 Of ‘Star’



Ready or not, Brandy is returning to the small screen.  The Grammy Award-winning singer turned actress has been tapped to guest star on FOX’s hit drama Star playing Cassie Brown.

HipHollywood got an exclusive first look at the former Moesha actress playing Carlotta Brown’s (Queen Latifah) younger sister and also found out how she much she enjoyed being back on set with the Queen.

“I love working with Queen Latifah. I have worked with her so many times over the years and to just see our growth and feel our chemistry on set is just amazing.”

Brandy and Latifah will also share the screen with another multi-talented singer, the one and only Patti LaBelle. LaBelle will also guest-star in multi-episode arcs playing Latifah’s tough but loving mother, Christine. Meanwhile the girls, (Ryan Destiny, Brittany O’Grady and Jude Demorest) – with Carlotta as their manager – continue to face roadblocks, despite their victory at Atlanta NextFest.

Star — “Rise From the Ashes” — Photo Credit: Jace Downs/20th Century Fox Television — ©2017 20th Century Fox Television. All Rights Reserved.

“Everybody here is just lovely and I love being here,” added Brandy. “I don’t want this to be my last episode. I want to stick around as long as I can because i love the way I feel here. It feels like a home for me.”

The new season of STAR returns Wednesday, March 28 at 9:00/8:00pm central.

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