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Robin Thicke accused of borrowing from Marvin Gaye songs

Virginia residents may be interested in a high-profile copyright lawsuit involving two big names in the music industry. The family of the late musician Marvin Gaye has asked Robin Thicke to pay a settlement for what they refer to as copyright infringement. According to a federal lawsuit filed by the family, Thicke has repeatedly borrowed from Gaye while writing such songs as "Love After War" and "Blurred Lines."

Along with accusing Thicke of having a fixation on Gaye, the family claims that Thicke used Gaye's celebrity for his own marketing purposes. When interviewed about his hit song Blurred Lines, Thicke admitted that he wrote the song with Gaye's "Got To Give It Up" in mind. The commercial litigation filed by the family alleges that Thicke mentioned Gaye as a way to draw more attention to his song.

In a legal action filed by Thicke, he claimed that his songs are completely original compositions. Though he admits some songs may feel the same as Gaye's, he does not believe that a reminiscent sound is copyright infringement. He went on to say that Gaye's family is attempting to claim ownership of an entire genre. In an appearance on Oprah, he said that the dispute with the Gaye family was "weird."

If a musician believes that someone has infringed on a copyright they own, a lawyer may be able to help them to sue for compensation. By presenting the specific similarities between the two pieces of music, a lawyer may help to establish that a copyright was violated. A musician or their family members may be compensated for royalties they should have been paid.

Source: USA Today, "Lawsuit: Thicke blurred lines between admiration, theft", Nate Rau, October 30, 2013

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