After releasing one of, if not the biggest song of 2014 and 2015, going on to selling over 6.1 million copies and claiming a solid fourth place on YouTube’s most watched videos of all time, it looks like it may have all simply been too good to be true. Ever since the dynamic duo of Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars dropped funky throwback track Uptown Funk, the pair have been battling copyright infringements ever since, most notably with The Gap Band, who ended up being awarded a writing credit thanks to the obvious similarities with their track Oops Upside Your Head. Now though, it looks like the pair are set to face their most damaging lawsuit yet.
The pair stated that Uptown Funk was influenced by early 80s Minneapolis electro-funk and soul music, and it turns out one of these 80s Minneapolis groups Collage agree. They are claiming that the tune is an “obvious, strikingly and/or substantially similar copy” of their 1983 single Young Girls. This goes on the basis that “many of the main instrumental attributes and themes… are deliberately and clearly copied, including, but not limited to, the distinct funky specifically noted and timed consistent guitar riffs…virtually if not identical bass notes and sequence, rhythm, structure, crescendo of horns and synthesizers rendering the compositions almost indistinguishable if played over each other and strikingly similar if played in consecutively.”
With that being said, sonically as an everyday listener, the two tracks do definitely have fairly clear comparisons. However, the fact that the pair have been constantly bombarded with lawsuits for the past two years makes it clear that it’s increasingly harder to make tracks which clearly reference the old. Who knows, perhaps Bruno’s latest g-funk 24K Magic is next?
Take a listen to the two tracks below and let us know what you think!