Remember how Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams got taken to court by the estate of Marvin Gaye over infringing Gaye’s classic track Got To Give It Up? They were found liable in the end and denied a retrial, and now footage from both Williams’ and Thicke’s depositions with Gaye’s lawyers has emerged.
As revealed by The Hollywood Reporter , a heated Pharrell can be seen ducking and weaving to little avail, facing some tough questioning from the lawyers on whether he can read music notation and what chords make up a bluegrass chord structure among other details. At times he utters he refers to previous questions as “ludicrous” and notes to one lawyers that he is “not here to teach you music”.
Thicke on the other hand caves straight away, taking the Mel Gibson defense by blaming his reliance on alcohol and Vicodin, the singer claiming he was drunk and high for every interview he had given in the year before.
The verdict has been criticised for setting a dangerous precedent, as whatever you think about the song’s questionable lyrics and controversial video, the estates of deceased artists holding contemporary artists liable for infringing copyright/taking inspiration from past work is only likely to stifle creativity, a sentiment Williams himself expressed shortly after the trail.
If you’re interested, have a listen to this side by side comparison.
In the meantime though, you can watch the footage from the depositions here below.