Upon listening to Olivia Rodrigo‘s hit single “good 4 u”, I was immediately transported to a younger, angsty version of myself listening to Paramore’s “Misery Business”. There’s a reason for that. At the weekend it was revealed the band’s vocalist Hayley Williams and former guitarist Josh Farro were just recently credited as co-writers of the song.
The Disney alumni has been heavily criticised by listeners for allegedly copying the 2007 track. Lead singer of Maroon 5, Adam Levine, has defended the artist on social media by saying that songwriters sometimes “rip something off inadvertently.”
“It’s a natural thing for it to happen, and sometimes it gets ugly and sometimes it’s warranted that people take legal action,” the 42-year-old explained on Instagram stories on Friday. “Sometimes it’s not warranted that people take legal action. And I think there’s definitely become more of a grey area that’s reared its ugly head these days.”
“…I do think that we should probably meet this with a little more compassion and understanding and try to find a way…,” Levine continued. “All this calling out, it’s like, music is a creative thing and I just hate to see it crushed.”
Following the criticism, Taylor Swift was also added to the production notes for a songwriting credit in the track “1 step forward, 3 steps back”. It featured an interpolation of the melody of Swift’s 2017 track New Year’s Day. Courtney Love has also slammed the artist for allegedly copying the 1994 album cover for Hole.
In June Grammy-award winner Elvis Costello shut down accusations that Rodrigo ripped of his 1978 song “Pump It Up” for her opening track on SOUR, “Brutal”.
“This is fine by me, Billy,” Costello responded in a tweet. “It’s how rock and roll works. You take the broken pieces of another thrill and make a brand new toy. That’s what I did #subterreaneanhomesickblues #toomuchmonkeybusiness.”