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Clyde Stubblefield: I Do Not Appreciate Not Getting Paid

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#1
Scott K Fish

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SKF NOTE: I look forward to the day it is standard practice in the recording industry to make sure musicians are paid for using their sampled sounds. That this is still an unresolved issue is heartbreaking.

 

Drummer Clyde Stubblefield, comes to Ardmore Music with James Brown Dance Party

DECEMBER 27, 2016 — 1:36 PM EST

by A.D. Amorosi, FOR THE INQUIRER

 

stubblefield_clyde.jpeg

 

These days, he drums live whenever he feels the funk. The one thing that gets his goat, though, is the hip-hop sampling of his famed signature pulses, without payment to him. It’s said that Stubblefield may be the most sampled man in hip-hop -- and the last one to get his financial due. â€œI can dig that others try to do what I do, and am happy when people try to play what I play,” he says, "but I do not appreciate not getting paid."

 

Full Story 

 

Scott K Fish Blog: Life Beyond the Cymbals

 

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#2
& You Dont Stop

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Did Clyde or JB ever file lawsuits against people who sampled the material? Does Clyde have any copywritten material?


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#3
tnsquint

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I don't blame him.
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#4
biggator

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Did Clyde or JB ever file lawsuits against people who sampled the material? Does Clyde have any copywritten material?

 

If I recall - copyright only covers lyrics and melody.. not rhythmic elements.


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#5
tnsquint

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Unfortunately, rights laws have not kept pace with technology. You would think that the least one could do is pay a day rate scale to someone whose recording you used for your own. Basically you hire the guy to come in and play without him having to physically come in and play. "Work for Hire" is always a contractual pitfall.
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#6
Doosh

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I think we are likely missing details to this story that are very important.

For example, it's entirely possible the performance was paid as work for hire, and the sampling of the recording is is compensated per-copy to the owner of the recording.
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#7
tnsquint

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I am sure that is the case. It's just a shame that there was never a legal provision made for that kind of sampling.
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#8
Olderschool

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I think we are likely missing details to this story that are very important.

For example, it's entirely possible the performance was paid as work for hire, and the sampling of the recording is is compensated per-copy to the owner of the recording.


That's right. We don't play melodies and we don't own the recordings. Chances are the label owns both anyway. And as Big said, I can't imagine winning a lawsuit for copyright infringement for drum licks. I mean 1001 drum books exist that teaches every conceivable groove.
 
Having said that, if a drummer writes drum parts that are fully transcribed and then assigns note values to those parts, much the same way Terry Bozzio does with his complex compositions, you can probably have a much better chance of damages involving copyright material. Just my uneducated opinion though.....

Edited by Olderschool, 30 December 2016 - 01:57 PM.

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#9
On the one

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Just imagine... all the hip-hop samples from the 80s through the mid 90s. If they could somehow find a clause or loophole to get paid, these 2 drummers would be set.
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#10
Scott K Fish

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There's nothing preventing artists, songwriters, and producers from seeing to it that Clyde Stubblefield be compensated. That's especially true for makers of hit songs.

 

Best,

skf


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#11
AtlantaDrumGuy

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I think we are likely missing details to this story that are very important.

For example, it's entirely possible the performance was paid as work for hire, and the sampling of the recording is is compensated per-copy to the owner of the recording.


Bingo. Royalties don't get paid out to the sidemen on these records. So even if someone sampled out the drum solo parts on Aja, the drummer wouldn't get paid unless he was the owner of the recording. I can see how this might seem unfair, but those are the rules.
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#12
mkelley

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It's an honor system, ASCAP or BMI were never set up that way to pay the sidemen. 


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#13
michaelg

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His drum parts on funky drummer are integral to that piece of music, he made it what it is, I would hope any artist who samples him asks for permission and pays him, I don't care if that's not legal, it's basic decency and a show of respect.
Having this debate is good and worthwhile , if everyone was more aware of sampling issues, perhaps current artists would have more respect for others work.
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#14
xipa4

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The same thing is also happens with Gregory C Coleman of The Winstons fame,in which his famous drum solo break at Amen Brother was sampled in countless other songs,which he didn't get credited to or paid for....


Edited by xipa4, 31 December 2016 - 10:55 AM.

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#15
michaelg

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I read that Prince had sampled a few pieces of music in his career, apparently he sent each and every musician in the samples a handsome cheque.
Respect.
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#16
On the one

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Can someone please clarify:

Back in in 88/89 a rapper Tone-Loc was sued( or threatened to sue) by Van Halen for sampling the Rif from " Jamie's Cryin " . How can this be contested and not a drum beat?
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#17
K.O.

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You can copyright a particular sound recording. Generally these copyrights belong to the record companies although sometimes the actual artist owns the recordings (usually only bigger name artists who have the clout to get these rights back from the record company). In the case of the Van Halen song they used a sample of the actual sound off the recording and therefore violated that copyright for that sound recording. I don't recall the details of the lawsuit but assume that any resulting compensation probably went to Warner Brothers and not the band itself (although maybe it did).

If Tone-Loc had created his own new "sound-alike" recording of that riff he would have been okay with using that, although there would still be compulsory publishing royalties to pay for the use of the tune.
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#18
On the one

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Thanks K.O. for the clarification
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#19
Scott K Fish

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Audio Home Recording Act: the first government-imposed royalties on devices and media, a portion of which is paid to the record industry directly.

 

But the industry can't see it's way to compensate Clyde Stubblefield and other sampled musicians?

 

skf


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#20
cymtrich

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they call it sampling, i call it theft necessitated by a lack of talent! bill
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