Owl City + Carly Rae Jepsen Aren’t Having a ‘Good Time’ With Copyright Lawsuits
It’s always a good time? Not when Owl City, Carly Rae Jepsen, and a host of others are on the receiving end of a lawsuit alleging they ripped off ‘Good Time’ from a 2010 track by an Alabama-based singer-songwriter.
Ally Burnett claims that ‘Good Time’ sounds way too similar to her composition ‘Ah, It’s a Love Song,’ and she’s demanding royalties for copyright infringement and “emotional and psychological damage.” Her complaint suggests that “many consumers may incorrectly assume that Burnett copied her own Original Motif from the Infringing Songwriters due to the widespread popularity and publication of ‘Good Time.’ Burnett’s reputation as an independent artist will be significantly damaged by such incorrect assumptions.” Burnett has turned off the comments for her ‘Ah, It’s a Love Song’ lyric video on YouTube, presumably because she’s been receiving negative comments from fans.
The lawsuit alleges that Jepsen and Owl City’s Adam Young could have heard Burnett’s song on MTV shows ‘The Hills’ or ‘Friendzone,’ which both featured the tune. Jepsen, it should be noted, didn’t write ‘Good Time,’ as Young penned it with Matthew Thiessen and Brian Lee, who are also named in the suit. ‘Good Time’ reached No. 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 this summer.
Burnett is suing not just the performers and songwriters, but also the record companies, publishing agencies and even ASCAP and SESAC, the companies that collect performance royalties, which sounds a little like throwing everything against the wall to see what sticks.
Does this lawsuit have merit? The “whoa-oh-oh-oh” hook is similar, but otherwise they’re both sunny pop songs that sound like a lot of music on Top 40 radio. Listen to both tracks below and judge for yourself.
Listen to Owl City and Carly Rae Jepsen, ‘Good Time’
Listen to Ally Burnett, ‘Ah, It’s a Love Song’