Radiohead has never been shy about saying how sick they are of their hit song “Creep,” even going out of their way for years to not play it live. But just because they don’t want to perform it doesn’t mean they don’t care about it. The band is suing Lana Del Rey for copyright infringement, alleging the singer stole parts of the 1992 single in her song “Get Free.”
It’s true about the lawsuit. Although I know my song wasn’t inspired by Creep, Radiohead feel it was and want 100% of the publishing – I offered up to 40 over the last few months but they will only accept 100. Their lawyers have been relentless, so we will deal with it in court.
— Lana Del Rey (@LanaDelRey) January 7, 2018
If you recall, “Creep” also had legal issues, and was accused of sharing a chord progression and melody with the 1972 song “The Air That I Breathe” by The Hollies. Songwriters Albert Hammond and Mike Hazlewood sued and received co-writing credits and a percentage of the song’s royalties after Radiohead admitted to the similarities.
Del Rey may have taken to Twitter to clearly state her song wasn’t inspired by the Radiohead hit, but she did offer almost half of the song’s publishing revenues. Does that mean there’s something to all this? Only Lana can know for sure. Have a listen for yourself and compare them.
Here’s “Get Free”:
And here’s “Creep”:
Hmm. The chord progression is almost the same but it that’s the basis for lawsuits, then every artist would be suing every other artist. The distinct melody, on the other hand, might be where Radiohead is taking issue — and where Lana might be in some trouble.
Bruno Mars had to give co-writing credits and royalties to the “Oops Upside Your Head” writers for “Uptown Funk.” Same for Sam Smith and his “Stay With Me,” with Tom Petty‘s “Won’t Back Down.” But 100%? That seems pretty greedy of Radiohead, considering some would argue that “Creep” is more similar to “The Air That I Breathe” than “Get Free” is to “Creep.” And since they didn’t have to give it all up, why should Lana?