The hit single “Girl on Fire” by Alicia Keys is landing her in hot water. Keys is being sued for allegedly lifting a portion of her song from the 1970s hit “Hey There Lonely Girl.” Roger Friedman, a music blogger, recognized a few lines in “Girl on Fire” and astutely pointed out that Keys forgot to give credit to Leon Carr and Eric Shuman for borrowing music the pair had written. While most of the article was accurate, the blogger mistakenly thought that both songwriters had died. However, Shuman is very much alive…and now he’s suing Alicia Keys for his just due.
The multi-Grammy award winning singer might have done well to recognize the power of the almighty search engine Google. Shuman, while having one foot in the grave according to the blogger, obviously was savvy enough to keep tabs on his online presence. After reading the blog, the songwriter left a post addressing the writer, thanking him for his find and clearing up pesky rumors of his untimely demise.
“Hi Roger, I am the cowriter of ‘Hey There Lonely Girl’ and I appreciate your recognizing an important part of ‘Lonely Girl’ in Alicia Keys’ new recording. Thanks for your expertise. By the way, though my dear friend Leon Carr is in Rock and Roll Heaven, I’m still here on the ground, writing songs.”
Basing most of his lawsuit against Alicia Keys on the blog penned by Friedman, Shuman credited the article with bringing to his attention the alleged theft of his music. Although the blog writer said that only two seconds of “Hey There Lonely Girl” was used, Shuman claims otherwise but was sure to admit that the rest of the allegations made by Friedman against Mrs. Swizz Beatz were accurate.
Hmm…how authentic is a story that says both songwriters are dead when, in fact, only one is?
Not one to let controversy stop her (just ask Mashonda, ex-wife of Swizz Beatz), Keys released a new video, “Brand New Me,” sporting a ‘new’ curly hairstyle. Is it me or does she look exactly the same as always?
Time will tell what effects Shuman suing Alicia Keys’ will have on her already fledgling image. She might have risked a lot more in the long run over two seconds of copyright infringement.