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Timbaland rips Commodore 64 tune


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The songs belong to the artists but only insofar as they are derivatives. That is, the CHANGES and whatever new composition and samples used belong to the artist(s) that did them. However, that does NOT mean that the songs completely belong to the artists - in other words, they couldn't say it was theirs and sell the songs. I'm pretty sure it's illegal to sell the remixes at all, actually.

The changes made in Timbaland's version include:

1. Damn fine production values

2. Vocals

3. Another melody line

4. A lot of arrangement changes

5. An edited bassline

The way he arranged this song was similar as if he sampled it, only instead of sampling uncreativally (See Daft Punk's Robot Rock) he sampled creatively, by recreating the original along with adding new parts and changing the overall mood making it a completely new song (See Daft Punk's Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger). Also, its worth noting I even spotted a piece of Intense Colour on SGX's Coactive album (I forgot which song) which was definately the melody line from the Mario Paint song, but I haven't seen him in court yet. DJ Green Lantern sampled Final Fantasy VII's battle theme for a rap track he did and he hasn't gotten sued over it yet. A lot of what goes on with sampling, borrowing, and taking influences today in music is a total gray area and the courts are having trouble on how to rule, it all just comes down to:

A. Is the sampler famous


B. Is the song they sampled famous

Giving credit doesn't technically count for a whole lot legally, but it counts a LOT for the artist personally. That is, if you make a derivative work under normal copyright law and you don't give credit, the artist in question is more likely to go after you because you disrespected them. If, however, you gave credit, they will be more likely to ignore your copyright infringement. Companies care less about this stuff, but it's still courteous to your listeners to let them know your sources.

I agree with this completely.

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It's legal if you get the appropriate license to. For an example, see that Estradasphere Super Mario Bros. 2 remix on this site? That's actually on one of their commercial albums, and they're known as a serious band, outside the context of OCR, if a little known one (I bought their most recent album in an FYE a few weeks ago back in NY).


Does that license mean going to Nintendo and saying "Can I please sell these?"

Cause if so, then yeah I already figured you could do that, since Nintendo should own the copyright to their games' songs and not the artists.

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hey you ignorant dillhole

there a difference between claiming a work of art as your own and making money off of it

the blood on the asphalt problem was just some dude going ya i made these

this asshole is making a profit off of someones work, which brings this to a new level


I was just using it as a refute to him saying that everything the remixers do isn't their creation. The only difference in this case is money, and nobody knows how much money anybody made off of this track. It wasn't a single so its not as big of an issue. I've said it multiple times, HE SHOULD HAVE STATED HE WAS INFLUENCED FROM THE SONG. However, do not dismiss the work Timbaland put into the track himself.

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I'm not going to dismiss the work Timbaland put into it, but that's not the point. Calling him talentless and the like is not only silly, but irrelevant. Putting that aside, I'm sure we can agree that this is a bit over the top and beyond the acceptable boundaries of sampling w/out giving credit.

This is an a whole different plane than the "mj made sonic music" thing, I'm not sure why that was brought up. The original was sampled into Do It, meaning that the sonic comparison would only be relevant if you actually heard the genesis/megadrive music sampled into Michael's work or vice versa.

I would like for this to spread around the net. Even if Tempest can't open a case and win, it's a good idea to share this. I know people who like making chiptunish music. The way I see it, is it could've been any one of them.

I mean I don't even "hate" Timbaland now or anything... Tempest just needs some credit, and I think it's worth pointing this out. ;)

One thing about this situation though, I actually find really funny. Can you imagine Timbaland sitting on his computer, browsing scene.org? Yeah, what the fuck?

Hahah, exactly.

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Not sure why things are getting so heated. Things are pretty cut and dry with the laws, and the only thing to really get bothered about is whether or not Timbaland stole the tune as source material.

There is some crazy chance in hell that it's a coincidence that it happened like this. Afterall, there are only 12 notes.

But most people are in agreement that the work was stolen and that would be an infringement on the copyright of the owner.

The owner seems to not have made a statement or anything (did I miss that?) so there's not much to be done.

Cool your collective jets, peeps.

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Not sure why things are getting so heated. Things are pretty cut and dry with the laws, and the only thing to really get bothered about is whether or not Timbaland stole the tune as source material.

Kinda sounds like it for the ringtone thing.

While I don't know where to find any statements from the owner, this is getting closer-

From a thread on Something Awful entitled "Timbaland ripped off a track from my buddy" (page doesn't load half the time, so here goes)

I've been an avid Demoscener for many years now, a subculture of creating art on computers (check demoscene.info and the demoscene wikipage for more info)

Basically we create 'real time' videoclips on new and old hardware. Stemming from cracktro's before games it became a scene on it's own where people come together at parties and compete in various competitions ranging from music and graphics to all kind of demo variations.

This is all done for fun and all productions are released for everyone to enjoy, first on BBS's and now on the internet.

So yeah, Timbaland is the next big thing since sliced bread, he's quite a skilled producer and makes many, many millions producing the hottest artists. So it is quite surprising when for Nelly Furtado's track 'Do It' on her latest album 'Loose' he blatantly stole a c64 conversion of an Amiga mod made by the Finnish demoscener Janne "Tempest/Damage" Suni.

To explain, in 2000 at Assembly, one of the biggest demoparties in Finland, Tempest competed in the so-called 'Oldskool Music Compo', a competition ment for music on old platforms like Amiga, c64, ZX-Spectrum and the likes. His entry 'Acid Jazzed Evening', a 4 channel Amiga .MOD won the competition. For your convenience I converted the mod to an mp3 which you can get here. The original .MOD file you can get from Scene.org here.

A c64 musician called grg remade the song on the c64 (using the infamous SID soundchip) which is what Timbaland used for Furtado's song. I also converted this SID to mp3, which you can get here.

And here is a 40 second clip of Nelly Furtado's track 'Do It'.

He literally stole the whole musical line to build this song around. I talked to Tempest and he told me that it's no use going to court, eventhough Scene.org supplied papers saying the song got uploaded on their servers in 2000. Fighting a big corporation like Geffen costs tons of money and time, which he does not have.

It's all kinda sour, to know that Furtado and Timbaland make a buckload of cash using a tune that was released for free. So the least I could do was to post about it on the internet and let people know.

So there! Spread the word! Timbaland is a thieving bastard!

edit: my buddy Gloom made a youtube video showing the similarities in both songs, you can watch it

edit: rehosted on genietervan.com (dreamhost.com)! please mirror people!

Mirror @ Limpninja.com !

Tempest's track here

grg's c64 remake here

and the Furtado snippet here

mirror from dj_pain (thanks dude!)

"Acid Jazzed Evening" by Tempest

the c64 conversion from grg

snippit from "Do It" by Nelly Furtado

I never thought I would see a post about amiga scene music and nelly furtado at the same time, pretty epic.

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What's all this talk about not having the guts to take on the big record labels? Here you have a person, the original composer and writeful owner of a piece of music that has made, probably, many thousands, if not millions, of dollars, to which he may be entitled. He is comepletely obscure, a non-celebrity with no reputation to protect, and is not a profesional musician with industry cred to protect either. He stands to lose nothing, and could gain a great deal of money and notoriety by taking the label who may have plagerized him to court. Even if he doesn't win his case, he stands a good chance at attracting enough media and industry attention to afford him future oppurtunities to release albums on a large, comercial scale, something he may have never been afforded had Timbuland's use of his composition not brought the talent and comercial viability of this demoscene artist into the public eye. Attorneys are not stupid; they're going to see some very promising evidence, not to mention a good chance for exposure, and someone is going to be willing to take this case pro bono, if the original artist is interested in pursuing legal action.

And, for the record, I saw the YouTube video and I listened to the songs. If I were judging this case, Tim would be handing over all of the money he made from this track to its original composer.

Has anyone considered going to G4/Tech TV with this? This is the bread and butter of their flagship program Attack of the Show.

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There is some crazy chance in hell that it's a coincidence that it happened like this. Afterall, there are only 12 notes.

Arpeggiated in the same exact way? Using the same exact (highly distinctive chiptune) instruments as the original? C'mon Mustin. :P

Personally, besides the bizarre mental image of Timbaland browsing scene.org, I found it really strange that they would sample something so incredibly distinct and easy to identify. Which leads me to think, while on the whole the song should be pulled and/or Tempest given credit and royalties--this is probably more an issue of miscommunication/ignorance than deliberate theft.

Has Timbaland ever publically expressed interest in the demoscene? Not that I know of. Is it more likely that a friend of his or someone in his entourage sent him the chiptune and he used it unaware of its origin? I would think so. If we were talking about, e.g. an electronic artist with roots more closely situated to the demoscene, someone in the entourage would probably have caught the song or at least been intrigued and inclined to question where it came from, recognizing it as a chiptune and checking out the demoscene to see who made it.

I think it's more likely that Timbaland and his entourage of hip-hop producers are just ignorant of the demoscene except for whoever brought in the sample.

Never heard about the ringtone rip, but it's possible that could be similar.

Timbaland is an incredibly successful producer--this guy has people buzzing around him constantly, undoubtedly bouncing ideas off him, giving him shit to listen to, etc. That's probably where this came from. He doesn't "need" to do something like this, and it's such a strange, easily identifiable choice of something to rip that it must be either ignorance or arrogance. And whatever you think of Timbaland, would the guy do something like this and jeopardize not only his but Nelly Furtado's career, just to be a dick?

My 2c.

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Also, its worth noting I even spotted a piece of Intense Colour on SGX's Coactive album (I forgot which song) which was definately the melody line from the Mario Paint song, but I haven't seen him in court yet.

Take the word "definitely" and swap in the phrase "very loosely based upon" and you'll be a bit closer. I should know, I wrote that cello part. Besides which, that very subtle, filtered addition to Coactive lasts all of ten seconds of the entire five minute track, which is completely original. Then recall that the melody which "definitely" was from Mario Paint is a mere eight notes from the whole source tune.

So SGX used a very liberal note progression I wrote which was very loosely based on eight notes from a Mario Paint tune for ten seconds in his five minute remix? That doesn't even compare to the current discussion. I understand what you're trying to communicate, but seriously, this whole example was a senseless reach.

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