Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars’s “Uptown Funk” is the song that has dominated pop music thus far in 2015. With it’s addictively sing-along chorus, the song has resonated well with the public; however, it may have hit a little too close for home for The Gap Band who were just added to the song’s writing credits. The Gap Band’s Charlie, Robert, and Ronnie Wilson, Rudolph Taylor, and Lonnie Simmons have all received credit for “Uptown Funk” after claiming that the song sounds similar to their 1979 hit “Oops Upside Your Head.”
“Uptown Funk’s” original writing credits were distributed amongst a team of six writers including Mark Ronson, Bruno Mars, Jeffrey Bhasker, Phillip Lawrence, Nicholas Williams, and Devon Gallaspy, who was added due to the sampling of his “All Gold Everything.” Upon hearing the track Minder Music, The Gap Band’s publisher, made a claim to YouTube’s content management system in February.
Once a claim is made on YouTube the company stops paying out for advertisements, instead saving the funds in a side account to distribute once the copywrite laws are discussed. Now that the writing credits have been changed, the funds should start flowing again, though they will be distributed to accommodate the change to the writing team.
The decision to share credits with The Gap Band places Mark Ronson and his team in a similar position to the one that Pharrell Williams, Robin Thicke, and T.I. found themselves in earlier this year when they were sued by Marvin Gaye’s family. The Gaye family drew parallels between Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” and one of Gaye’s tracks, taking the hitmakers to court and winning a case against the team. Manager Danny Zook claims that after the Gaye family’s victory musicians are “being a little more cautious,” claiming “no one wants to be involved in a lawsuit.” This could explain the decision to simply add The Gap Band writers to the credits.
Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars experienced 14 weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 with their single “Uptown Funk,” a feat that has only been bested by Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men’s 16 week reign with “One Sweet Day” in 1996. The single was kicked from the top spot by Wiz Khalifa’s “See You Again,” a cut from Furious 7 and his chart topper in several years. Though The Gap Band missed the height of “Uptown Funk,” the single is still performing exceptionally well.
FDRMX Eyes: Pacovolume is a French Indie Rock artist from Paris. Check out his video “Cookie Machine.”