.

Coldplay Say Satriani "Lacked Originality" As "Viva La Vida" Fight Hits Court

April 7, 2009 12:54 PM ET

As the Battle of "Viva la Vida" hits the legal system, Coldplay have once again denied copycatting the riff from Joe Satriani's "If I Could Fly" for the title track off the band's latest album. In papers filed yesterday in a Los Angeles federal court, according to Billboard, Coldplay's lawyers argued that the similarities between "Viva la Vida" and "If I Could Fly" weren't enough to warrant a lawsuit. The band's legal team also stated that Satriani's instrumental "lacked originality," and thus shouldn't be covered by copyright law, therefore preventing "Viva La Vida" from violating any copyrights.

The statements in court echo the band's own words they posted on their Website after Satriani first accused them of ripping off his song. "If there are any similarities between our two pieces of music, they are entirely coincidental, and just as surprising to us as to him. Joe Satriani is a great musician, but he did not write the song 'Viva la Vida,' " Chris Martin and company said in December 2008. Despite assurances that they'd never heard the song, Satriani and his team continued on with their lawsuit, which seeks "any and all profits" from the track. "Viva la Vida" went on to win Record of the Year at the Grammys, something Satriani was sarcastically hoping would happen.

After Coldplay's remarks in court, Satriani's lawyer Howard King responded that the argument was emblematic of the defense in copyright cases. He also hinted that the new Chickenfoot guitarist would be willing to settle the matter out of court, a signal that either Coldplay wants to put the whole copyright incident behind them or Satriani thinks his case won't stand up in front of a jury.

Related Stories:

Coldplay Respond to Satriani Plagiarism Suit: "Just As Surprising To Us"
Joe Satriani Says Coldplay "Figured This Little Guitar Player Guy Will Leave Them Alone"
Joe Satriani Sues Coldplay For "Viva La Vida" Plagiarism

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Promiscuous”

Nelly Furtado with Timbaland | 2006

This club-oriented single featuring Timbaland, who produced Nelly Furtado's third album, Loose, was Furtado’s sexy return after the Canadian singer's exploration of her Portuguese heritage on Folklore. "In the studio, initially I didn’t know if I could do it, 'cause Timbaland wrote that chorus," Furtado said. "I'm like, 'That's cool, but I don't know if I'm ready to do full-out club.'" The flirty lyrics are a dance between a guy and girl, each knowing they will end up in bed together but still playing the game. "Tim and I called it 'The BlackBerry Song,' she said, "because everything we say in the song you could text-message to somebody."

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com