Banks Blasts Neon Jungle For Stealing "Waiting Game"

Banks is upset after UK girl-group Neon Jungle included a cover of her song “Waiting Game” on their debut album without asking her permission. The song is set to appear on Banks’ album Goddess, which comes out in September, but Neon Jungle’s album just came out this week. The LA singer posted a statement on Facebook to address the issue: “I was as shocked as you to see this song made up of my own heartbeats on their album. A song that was born from my real life, my real heartache, my real fingertips when I was at one of the most confusing times in my life. How strange it is to see it used on someone else’s album before it even comes out on mine.”

Neon Jungle shared a cover of the song back in February, so it shouldn’t have been a complete surprise when it showed up on their album. The group has also done covers of Kiesza’s “Hideaway” and Hozier’s “Take Me To The Church,” the latter of which appears on the deluxe edition of their album. Part of the reason Banks is mad may be that Neon Jungle didn’t attribute the song as a cover. Technically speaking, this isn’t necessary but could have been seen as a gesture of goodwill. Banks is on her way to becoming a star, but chances are that most people who listen to the Neon Jungle album will have no idea that “Waiting Game” isn’t an original track.

Legally, Neon Jungle is in the clear. Banks is credited in the liner notes, and she’ll be paid royalties on each purchase or stream of the track. “It makes me feel very uncomfortable. Like my own thoughts were stolen from me and sold as someone elses,” Banks continued in her post. “I am a new artist and new to this business and I am told it is legal. But it feels really icky. I guess I can only hope Waiting Game means as much to Neon Jungle as it did to me when I wrote it.”

Compare the two versions of the track below:

Banks’ Goddess is out 9/9 via Harvest. Read our Q&A with her from earlier this year here.

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Comments (14)
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    • This is different dude. This is a song that’s featured on their album, which they are making money off of. If they performed it live, she’d be cool with it I’m sure, but including a cover of a song that’s not even out on an album yet without her permission? Not cool.

      • Meant to upvote, hit down by accident, can’t undo? Shitty commenting system. Sorry.

      • Banks is making money off of it too. No has ever in the history of music needed permission from an artist to cover their song. You pay a flat fee (usually through the harry fox agency) and that is that.

      • Whatever. She’s not being ripped off in any way. She’ll get her royalties, she’s credited in the liner notes of the albums, she really has no reason to be upset. This is a really ridiculous temper tantrum.

        • Honestly, I think she’s got every right to be upset. And I would hardly call her post a “temper tantrum.” And it’s not like the Don Henley thing in the sense that she’s mostly upset about the timing. I doubt that she would be as upset of the song had been released on Neon Jungle’s album after coming out on her own album. And not reaching out for permission or even just to let her know is pretty damn shady. It’s not like this band is covering a Lady Gaga or Beyonce song that everyone will recognize. Sure, she’ll still get paid, but I don’t think Banks is concerned about that sort of thing, like Don Henley would be.

          • She’s not been wronged here though. Nothing bad could possibly come from this for her. Her career’s obviously got enough momentum now that some third-rate pop band that nobody knows outside of the UK (I sure as hell hadn’t heard of them until this) decided to do a karaoke rendition of one of her songs isn’t going wash everything down the drain. If this is a matter of “a violation of artistic integrity” then perhaps she shouldn’t have released most of the songs on her album before the album was actually released. At any rate, I just think the outrage is silly and that this is nothing to get bent out of shape about. She’ll be fine.

    • Banks toured with the Weeknd. I’m doubt she would have done it if he said no.

    • The covers you mentioned aren’t being sold. This is more about her being a new artist, too. Her debut album hasn’t even come out yet, and they are putting her song on their album first without her permission. I have no respect for “Neon Jungle” as artists.

  2. I think you should have the class to ask before doing a cover and if they respond no, don’t do it.

  3. If you’re gonna cover a new artist’s most successful single without their permission and put it on your album, at least do something different with it! They just sound like a bunch of karaoke singers with bad rhythmic timing.

  4. well that cover was just unbearably derivative.

    so are these like the new spice girls, only more dour?

  5. This story upsets me. They used the exact same (only less-inspired somehow) backing track too? They didn’t do ANYTHING new with it? They just wanted to put their worse, less unique voices on the song, I guess.

  6. Cover songs can be fun on an album, but when a new act tacks multiple covers on their debut album, and both of those songs are recent/current singles by other new artists… yeah, I don’t know what to call that other than trying to ride someone else’s coattails.

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