I posted about the Blurred Lines verdict on Facebook yesterday and thought that today, I would move on...spare your feeds yet another blog about it. But this morning as I was making my daughter lunch for school (my last year of doing that), I couldn't escape Good Morning America, NPR and the newspaper. It was all over the place. And so were the many differing points of view about the verdict.
As I scooped a handful of Stacey's Pita Chips into a baggie, I couldn't help but start having some thoughts of my own, other than whether I believe the jury was right or wrong. I will share them. Because that's what I do now.
This is my attorney, Mark Levinsohn. The one with the glasses...to the left of the guy I wish would be a bit more humble in his rhetoric after winning such a monumental case.
Mark has been my guy for over 25 years and has never steered me wrong. I chose him to be my lawyer because he wasn't a big shot (at the time) (well, still), but more-so because I trusted his integrity. He would never take a case for the money if he didn't believe he was representing something honorable. So maybe I am swayed a little bit about how I feel about the outcome...because I know what kind of a guy he is. For those of you who do not agree with the verdict, don't hate me. Hear me out. This blog isn't about the law. I actually don't know what I would have done if I were on that jury.
I suggest to you this: Maybe this whole thing wasn't so much about the law as it was about Karma. Can we agree on that? Perhaps sometimes one's behavior, statements, choices and attitude affect the energy the Universe bestows upon us. I know—I sound like a woo woo. But in my heart I feel that Karma had something, actually a lot, to do with the verdict. In the wacky business around which we revolve, where there are so many posers being rewarded and little guys getting stepped on (not that the Gaye Estate was a little guy), I dunno...maybe this was one of those times the Universe caught us off guard.
And this: To the idea that the verdict set an unfortunate precedent and will affect songwriters' creativity, (I wonder about that, as there have been many cases where the defendant won) I suggest to you that these are powerful and influential talking points. It doesn't have to be that way. If we (and we all do at some point, myself included) pay homage to another, (unconsciously or not) or borrow a melody or an obviously recognizable enough vibe, so much so that we try to clear being sued before we release our song, we can choose to do the right...umm, I mean...the Sam Smith thing: settle up, make a lot of money anyway, keep our integrity, gain more fans. Win a Grammy.
Perhaps if the bench were approached before the trial, a deal could have been agreed on for a lot less than 7.4 million dollars in damages and things wouldn't have gotten so ugly. And we wouldn't be saying how awful this is for the creative community, because it never would have gone this far. I dunno. Just thoughts...as I put an apple in the lunch box and fill up a green canteen.
I am a fan of Robin Thicke's voice and of Pharrell Williams' genius. And, it goes without saying, I support uninhibited creativity. I hope we all, as a community, can watch what just happened and take something with us that we didn't have before.
As for Mark, I believe in his goodness. He may care about a pay out, (who doesn't care about money?) but he cares about people and honor and principle more. If anyone out there should find yourself in a legal "situation," where you've crossed a line, or someone has crossed yours, let me know. I have his number. :)
Now, I can move on.
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