21 thoughts on “Did Coldplay Copy Joe Satriani?”

  1. As a Thoughtocauster and Conundrummer in a band called “Life Puzzler”, and also as a responsible evolutionary biologist (which I am in fact not) it is necessary to ask, “Is the dolphin copying the fish?”
    Is the light bulb ripping off the firefly? This seems like a case of convergent evolution – of finding simliar solutions to similar problems. In this case, the problem of what kind of mediocrity can be profitably foisted on the music buying public.
    This is a pretty simple melody. They both could have made it up. It ain’t “Donna Lee” or “Koko”. It’s the type of melody you could hear in an elevator or in a department store and then, through the process of “My Sweet Lord Osmosis”, think you created it. I am waiting for a professional Muzakician/Composer to sue them both. Then Bono can sue Coldplay for everything that’s left.

  2. Yep! Pretty generic lines from the wet side. There are several other pieces of music coming to mind …

  3. The first time I heard that song I though it was stolen from somewhere.
    Coldplay to me is just like a real watered down drink.

    Its funny that we are talking about Coldplay on a Zappa site. Frank being a man willing to take risks at any cost. Coldplay being a band willing to play it safe at any cost.

  4. [quote post=”706″]Then Bono can sue Coldplay for everything that’s left.[/quote]

    (This IS the real Alex, btw.)

  5. i’ve said for the past 2,3,4, years coldplay have started to MORPH’ into u2, people slate bono/U2 but at least he is honest and genuine!………you know what..? i’m not arsed.. frank zappa 1940-1993

  6. I bet this is done on an autopilot basis like C&D letters generated by legal representatives…

  7. With all the different permutations possible by keys and notes, this is bound to happen.

    Whether or not you get sued really depends on whether or not a professional con artist who ripped your ass off owns the rights to the song you have allegedly copied.*

    *That’s right, you heard right folks! Allen Klein, that lovable little hoodlum, owned the rights to “He’s So Fine.” If you ask a crook to take over the business end of your record label and he fucks you over and you call him on it…make sure you don’t do anything sounding remotely like the songs he may own the rights to.

  8. I’ll forgo commenting on the likelihood of a similar melody arising from a basic ii-V-I-vi chord progression and focus on another important aspect of this: the extremely low probability of “My Sweet Lord” syndrome in this case. The only thing that made it plausible for George Harrison to have “subconsciously plagiarized” a song like “He’s So Fine” is the fact that it was a huge radio hit (bullshit, but still plausible). In this case, it’s a lesser known song written by a guy who is popular among dweebs who think every other instrument was created to back up the electric guitar and “good” guitarists all sound like him. Somehow I doubt Coldplay came across this gem. Furthermore, the fact that there have now been two separate claims of copyright infringement against “Viva La Vida” should serve as further evidence that a lot of people have probably had the same idea. It’s not a particularly complex piece of music.

    Nevertheless, I wish Mr. Satriani luck in his lawsuit. If this falls through, maybe he can sue Creaky Boards (now they’re actually in the same key!).

  9. Viva La Vida
    Inna Gadda da Vida
    In-A-Gadda Stravinsky
    I am beginning to see a pattern.
    Somebody’s rippin off somebody here but i don’t know who!!!
    On the other hand, a musical quote could be considered Fair Use.

  10. The only reason why this is getting so much attention is because it’s everybody’s favourite ‘oh-so-generic’ band to hate, Coldplay. I found a link to a song from 2000, that had a similar melody*, and chord progression also; surely Satch plagiarised them?
    I haven’t listened to much recent Satriani, but I really hope that song isn’t representative. It’s how ironic how generic it is considering how much of an improvement the recent Coldplay album has been on their past releases, although whether that was due to Brian Eno’s arrangements is another matter.

  11. As in literature, there are a limited number of stories to tell before you begin repeating yourself, so as in music there are just so many musical variations before you, too, begin to repeat. It’s the musician’s individual style that makes them unique, not which one plagiarized which?

  12. It is actually quite amazing that with only seven notes from which to choose in the diatonic and the redundancy of most rhythm in pop music that there is not more duplication from one song to another. The two most notable examples being My Sweet Lord and Viva La Vida. Can anyone name other examples where there has been a legimate coyright infringement claim?

  13. [quote post=”706″]a legimate coyright infringement claim?[/quote]
    err, that should have read “copyright”

  14. I heard on Howard Stern that Joe said it took him 10 years to write that song. Now that is funny, it is like his N-Lite!

  15. Satriani’s music is redundant muzak style. Those ideas can pop up anytime, anyplace, for no reason at all and replicate by themself.

    All popmusic sounds the same anyway (and all Satriani sounds the same, too). But though I don’t care for Coldplay, I think their execution of the same banal musical idea seems far better than Satriani’s little ditty in this case.


  16. [quote comment=”3227″]I heard on Howard Stern that Joe said it took him 10 years to write that song. Now that is funny, it is like his N-Lite![/quote]

    Ahahah!!! Exactly the same thing!

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