Marvin Gaye’s family is getting pretty fucking greedy. Earlier this week, a jury found that Robin Thicke and Pharrell had ripped off Gaye’s “Got To Give It Up” with their huge hit “Blurred Lines.” They ordered Thicke and Pharrell to pay the R&B great’s heirs a mind-boggling $7.3 million in damages, thus setting a dangerous precedent for any court cases involving any music that’s inspired by any other music. And now the Gaye family might be turning their attention toward another Pharrell megahit, “Happy.” They’re not going to be satisfied until they’ve sued the ridiculous hat off that man’s head.
According to CBS News, the Gaye family sat down with Entertainment Tonight’s Nischelle Turner to gloat about their victory and to claim that “Happy” is a direct bite of Gaye’s 1965 single “Ain’t That Peculiar.” Marvin’s daughter Nona Gaye says, “I’m not going to lie. I do think they sound alike.” But she adds that they aren’t planning to sue just now because “we’re not in that space.”
Meanwhile, Gaye’s widow Janis Gaye says, “We’re just in the moment today and we’re satisfied… I heard the mash-ups — but I didn’t really need to hear them. I know ‘Ain’t That Peculiar’ and I’ve heard ‘Happy.'” Here’s one of the mash-ups that she’s talking about:
The two songs do share some surface similarities, and after this “Blurred Lines” case, apparently surface similarities are enough to cause seven-figure court decisions.