Plagiarism is (not) a joke

BENJAMIN PRATT

Image Credit: FasterLouder

Head to head: Kevin Parker vs Pablo Ruiz. Photo: FasterLouder

Over the last few weeks controversy and confusion has surrounded the music world due to a clip going viral that reveals the song ‘Feels Like We Only Go Backwards’ may have been plagiarised.

The hit single by Aussie psychedelic rockers Tame Impala may be plagiarised from, get this, a song written in 1989 by an Argentinian child star named Pablo Ruiz.

The similarities between Ruiz’s song ‘Océano’ and ‘Feels Like We Only Go Backwards’ were first exposed by Chilean writers Raúl Álvarez and Patricio Pérez.

Since then, they have remarked to Rolling Stone that it was “a joke.”

Though Pablo Ruiz is trying to laugh all the way to the bank, consulting his lawyers and contemplating legal action.

Born in 1975, Ruiz recorded ‘Océano’ when he was 14 years old in 1989 and it was released by EMI records.

In contrast, Tame Impala released ‘Feels Like We Only Go Backwards’ in 2012 on Modular Records; a joint venture with EMI records.

“We never thought we’d had this impact and we’re very surprised about it,”  Álvarez and Pérez told Rolling Stone.

“Of course we think it’s funny, but we hope there are no charges against Tame Impala. We actually like them a lot.”

It’s also worth mentioning that in March 2010, after Ricky Martin came out as a homosexual, Ruiz claimed in a TV interview with Argentinian journalist Viviana Canosa that he kissed Martin at a party in Mexico when he was 17 and Martin was 22.

His claims were branded as “a barely known trying to bank on Ricky’s fame” by Argentinian website Terra.com and “only trying to get some attention and ride on Ricky’s coattails” by LatinGossip.com.

Whether Pablo Ruiz is trying to ride on the coattails of Tame Impala’s worldwide success remains to be proved in a court of law… if it ever actually get’s that far.

Kevin Parker, the brains behind Tame Impala, only had one thing to say when contacted by Rolling Stone for a comment: “This is a joke, right?”

Have a listen of the two tracks side by side and decide for yourself whether Pablo has a case.

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