Ospreyshire Origins: Pugnam Contra Fures Leonis Pt. II: The Queen Is False and Her Hive Is Deluded

Lyrics:

Such a naughty girl typical in copying imagery
Not from precambrian times, but from 2018
I wouldn’t blame your man or blaming fire
But your employers who were accomplices
It sucks to be you abducting the black house
While you call your vanity project a “gift”
Your daughter must be so proud of you
Your shame ya mobali ya mobali [Lingala for “To the right, to the right”]
Oh wait, you have none
You may be called a queen, but I see a phony
Keep thinking you’re a survivor

[Lingala]
Ozali mokonzi mwasi te
Ozali nkosi te
Ozali Nzambe te!


Welcome to part 2 of my Pugnam Contra Fures Leonis trilogy which is all about one of the biggest pieces of cat burglary, cinematic plagiarism, and cultural appropriation ever! This is actually the most recent example of this ravenous plagiarism. Shout-out to Inskidee for that term!

This song is about Yannick Illunga AKA Petite Noir. He’s a Belgium-born avant-pop musician of Congolese and Angolan descent who is based in Cape Town, South Africa. In 2018, he recorded an EP called La Maison Noir (The Black House) and released a long-form music video containing most of the songs, but adding a narrative and incorporating visuals from African culture. They filmed it straight in the Namib desert which covers his current home country and it’s next door neighbor Namibia. I think you might like this short musical of sorts.

Then one year later…Mickey Mouse happened to have a certain diva as an accomplice…

Image result for petite noir beyonce

LOOK OUT, BEYHIVE! I’M GOING TO BASH YOUR FAKE GODDESS AND THAT OVERRATED MOVIE FRANCHISE!!

Wow, just wow! The Petite Noir video was barely a year old before Disney and the former Destiny’s Child member managed to rip off his music video when the newest iteration of Nala decided to release her video for “Spirit” for the Lion King remake. Here are some images from both videos.

Beyonce

Do you honestly believe that Beyonce, Jake Nava, Jon Favreau, or anyone at Disney didn’t see the Petite Noir video? Do any of you think it’s some little coincidence that both videos would take place in the desert and have traditional African clothing in red and blue? Come on, people. This isn’t like “Mbube” or a certain Osamu Tezuka anime/manga series (we’ll get to that in a certain post!) which both predate the internet. This was from 20-freaking 18. This was stupid and the denial is just facepalm-worthy. JUST OWN UP TO IT! No, just because Beyonce had African musicians on her vanity project of a companion soundtrack doesn’t give her a right to steal from another musician from the continent. Also, notice how that album is called “The Lion King: The Gift” and the Petite Noir’s video is called “La Maison Noir: The Gift and The Curse“. Think about it! Here’s a good link about that plagiarism issue and some of the online reactions.

The song was an experimental acoustic-ish track, but I got to use effects to my mbira to give it an electric sound to it. I was listening to a ton of Konono No. 1 and Kasai Allstars before writing and recording, so that instrumental choice was highly influenced by them using amplified thumb pianos in most of their songs. Besides that, I use Petite Noir references and a bunch of Beyonce references in the lyrics. See if you spot them.

After this piece of thievery, we’re going to get to the big example of this plagiarism marathon. It will be hard not to have some pride in this work and in part 3, all you anime fans are going to love me even though you can guess what the last part will be about. :3

La Maison Noir: The Gift and the Curse is property of Petite Noir and Red Bull Music. The screenshot is from YouTube.

The Beyonce picture is from Timeslive.

The screenshot comparison is from WiseAfri. The La Maison Noir screenshots are property of Petite Noir and The Spirit screenshots are property of Disney.

Ospreyshire Origins: Albert Holly

Lyrics:

Abington-on-Thames and Lake Placid are fighting about what never belonged to them
Covering their tracks from a real cover song
Too busy calling Pablo or lusting for life
Ignoring the vital air around them
Too selfish to notice they aren’t free
From an originator
At least the first cover knew it’s dues
It knew it’s dues

You won’t get hitched by following ladies
Even when they end up at your shows
Same with stalking melodies you didn’t write
Absinthe won’t make your song better nor will those dead notes
They’re so desperate
They’re so freaking desperate

Just let the air in…


Here’s another song about music plagiarism! Hooray! This one’s going to be multi-layered since it deals with a bunch of people.

We’ll start with the original song “The Air That I Breathe” by Albert Hammond.

That song isn’t too shabby even though it’s not my cup of tea. This song got more popular a few decades ago when the band The Hollies covered it. As with anyone with a shred of decency, they gave full credit to Albert Hammond for creating the song to begin with. They give it more of a rock feel as opposed to the mostly acoustic original.
Chances are you probably heard of their version of the song in various movies or TV shows.

Image result for the hollies

This particular quintet would eventually fight alongside Albert Hammond when they took on a certain critically-acclaimed band that so many people suck up to and make their standards of music entirely based on this band.

Image result for radiohead

OOH! I’m going to take on the biggest music snob band of all time! Oh baby, I’m going to get a ton of hate for this particular story. That’s right. Radiohead was involved in a plagiarism case and it is for their most famous song ever: “Creep”. Yes, one of the biggest college rock songs of the 90s bore some eerie similarities to the verses of “The Air That I Breathe”. The Hollies actually took them to court and WON! Nowadays, “Creep” mentions Albert Hammond and The Hollies in the writing credits while also giving royalties to them. Isn’t it ironic that a band who has been hailed for their creativity and originality would steal? What gets even crazier is that they accused a certain pop singer for ripping off “Creep”.

Image result for lana del rey

This is a thievery chain going on! Lana Del Rey was bashed for her song “Get Free” for ripping off “Creep”, the same song that lost a copyright infringement case against the song “The Air That I Breathe”. I heard her song and the vocal line is pretty similar. Here’s a video containing excerpts of The Hollies’ cover of Albert Hammond’s song, “Creep”, and “Get Free”. You be the judge of this.

Sounds like an easy mashup to make at best, right? I didn’t realize how insane this case was. Granted, I was most familiar with “Creep” by the Radiohead mainly because that was a big song that came out during my childhood and later when I talked with some music fans I was friends with who were big into that band.

For my song Albert Holly, I decided a basic piano ballad would suffice. I make a TON of Radiohead and Lana Del Rey references in the lyrics as one might guess. Yes, the “They’re so desperate” part of the song parodies the pre-chorus of “Creep” including the random ghost notes by hitting the keyboard instead of chucking an electric guitar.

Hope you all appreciate this story behind the song.

The picture of Albert Hammond is from BBC.

The picture of The Hollies is from Britannica.

The picture of Radiohead is from the Irish Times.

The picture of Lana Del Rey is from Discogs.

Ospreyshire Origins: Halstead’s Trophy

Lyrics:

I no longer wanted to be down
After you took my crown and cashed it in for millions of pounds
So shamelessly

I had to strengthen my heart
To withstand all your darts that multiplied from the start
Of your thievery

Originator be my guide
May justice be on my side
Halstead will be filled with pride with the trophy that’s rightfully mine

You think you can do what you will
I made you admit your guilt
How does it make you feel that you’re forced to know my name?

Take a picture now (X6)
To immortalize your shame


Do you want to know what can really suck about plagiarism cases? It can force me to actually defend mainstream pop stars on certain occasions when I would never do so otherwise.

This is one of those times.

Meet Matt Cardle. He’s an acoustic pop singer/songwriter hailing from Halstead, Essex, England. Yes, the name of the song refers to his hometown. Cardle has been quite popular in the UK even though he’s unknown in America. He got his big break after winning on X Factor, so he certainly has several ears throughout Good Ol’ Blighty. He had a song on his first album called “Amazing” which was a minor hit in the UK back in 2011. Wouldn’t it be crazy if another Brit were to steal his song? Whoever could it be?

THIS GUY!

Image result for ed sheeran

That’s right. Ed Sheeran stole someone else’s song! That is just annoying since his fanbase defended him and called Matt Cardle some nobody. Sure, Matt Cardle doesn’t have as much of a worldwide popularity as the Ipswitch-based pop star, but I wouldn’t call him obscure especially when it comes to English music. Matt Cardle has sold over 2 million records, has been on major labels even to this day, and like I said earlier: he’s an X Factor winner and I know that show is popular in the United Kingdom. Here’s some more context. Do you want to know who Matt Cardle beat out in the finals of X Factor in the same season he won it? Cher Lloyd and this one boy band that no one’s heard of called ONE DIRECTION! Yeah, think about that for a minute.

In case you’re wondering, the song that ripped off “Amazing” is “Photograph”. Sure, it wasn’t as big of a hit in America compared to “Sing” or “Thinking Out Loud” which were on the same album, but I know I heard that song playing on the radio whenever I was shopping or eating at some restaurants. To be just, the verses themselves are independent, but those choruses…WOW, Ed didn’t even try besides having different lyrics. Here’s a video of both song’s choruses and tell me he didn’t listen to this Essex crooner’s song!

Matt Cardle’s co-writers/producers actually sued Ed Sheeran and the beat him down in court! Sheeran was forced to give writing credits and royalties to everyone involved who made “Amazing”. Good on them for doing that. I never thought I would have to defend someone who won a freaking music reality show, but that was the day.

Much like both songs, I decided to do a light acoustic ballad, but with my ukulele as a main instrument and I got to use my “pop star” voice which is a rarity as Ospreyshire for obvious reasons. I hope you also appreciate the stealth puns with both songs in Halstead’s Trophy.

You’re welcome, Essex!

The album cover of Matt Cardle is from Wikipedia and is property of Syco music.

The photo of Ed Sheeran is from The Independent.

Ospreyshire Origins: Larceny By Dirigible series

Larceny By Dirigible I Lyrics:

Do You feel shame stealing melodies? (X2)
The spotlight must feel so nice
You can’t see the enlightened leaving you

Its larceny in your backyard (X2)
Don’t act like you’re so confused
You put ignoramuses in a big daze

You live atop a mountain of theft (X2)
I hope endless water floods your realm
You won’t rise anymore

How many years must you get away? (X2)
I guess your fans became a shield
Protecting you from swift justice

Joan Baez
Anne Bredon
Jake Holmes
Bert Jansch
Howlin’ Wolf

Larceny By Dirigible II Lyrics:

Quit complaining that success was the only reason you got caught
You need reality to set you straight, not a whole lotta fantasies
Your excuses are lemons better suited for lemonade to quench your desires
Watch your step on that killing floor, you band of pirates
Keep trying to bring your subterfuge

Willie Dixon
Howlin’ Wolf
Robert Johnson
Albert King
Bobby Parker
Sonny Boy Williamson

Larceny By Dirigible III Lyrics:

There will be no hats off
To the glorified filchers of rock n’ roll
Raking in millions for their laziness
Resting on instrumental talent
Its time to shake this fake originality down to make way
For real innovators
There will be no more pinching and crediting one’s self in this zone
That will never happen
Since people have been lambasting you

Moby Grape
Bert Jansch
Bukka White

Larceny By Dirigible IV Lyrics:

Did it feel good opening for that band?
Did it excite you when you wanted that heavenly acoustic riff?
Did it arouse you to become rock gods from one song?
Did it please you when their leader drowned saving his son?
Did it heal your soul that the plaintiffs didn’t match your bank accounts?
Did you smile even when that constellation called you on your stolen bull?

Jay Ferguson
Mark Andes
John Locke
Ed Cassidy
Randy California
SPIRIT!!!

Larceny By Dirigible V Lyrics:

You think crediting someone’s mom was good enough?
How pathetic
It shows how much you don’t care
You’re too busy making custard with blues legends’ works
Heads are hurting from your ill-gotten success
Yet the masses continue praising
You when it was undeserved on so many levels

Sleepy John Estes
Bukka White
Blind Boy Fuller
Ritchie Valens

Oh, so now you want to start acknowledging others?


I’m going to tick off some people with this Ospreyshire Origins post especially with classic rock fans and potentially those who are older than me. What annoys me is when people from older generations crap on newer music today by saying it’s all garbage or it steals from others who came before. To be just, a lot of modern mainstream music is trash in my opinion, so I do have some agreements over there in that regard. As far as stealing other people’s music, yes, it does happen and I do talk about it in later songs on Dear Innovare. If I do hear that in real life especially about ripping off people’s music, then I have the right question to ask them.

“Do you listen to Led Zeppelin?”

Image result for led zeppelin

For starters, I was never a fan of their music. It was roughly ten years ago when some musician friends of mine told me that Led Zeppelin had a career full of plagiarizing other people’s music. I thought it was crazy until I listened to some examples which were mind-blowing. There’s one specific one that involves the band picture I used for this post which I’ll describe later on.

Led Zeppelin fans annoy me with how much in denial they are about this mega-selling influential classic rock band ripped off a good portion of their discography from blues artists, folk singers, and other rock bands. In each installment of Larceny By Dirigible, I explicitly name each singer and songwriter Led Zeppelin stole from their albums. The fact I number them in roman numerals is a parody of LZ’s discography and the songs from each album. Here’s a list of songs that were stolen. Funny enough, Led Zeppelin actually LOST against some of those singers in court like Jake Holmes (the real writer of “Dazed and Confused”), Anne Bredon and Joan Baez (“Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You”), and Willie Dixon (“You Need Love”) just to name a few. I hate how Zeppelin fans are saying “Yeah, but they did it better.” That excuses nothing and I know they wouldn’t say that if the situations were reversed. Led Zeppelin would be NOTHING without the several musicians they stole from. I believe it was Howard Stern who called them “The World’s Greatest Cover Band” which I find to be hilarious because there’s truth to it. With those blues musicians, one could make a case that they were guilty of cultural appropriation since them and several other classic rock bands probably think that stealing from black people is alright if the rock stars who steal them are white, but that’s nothing new in history.

From a musical standpoint, it was fun recording and writing since it involved some of the most folksy and bluesy songs I’ve ever written under the Ospreyshire moniker. I wanted the recording to be simple without that many effects even when I busted out the Omnichord in one of the songs. I also had to practice my ukulele lead work to give that acoustic rock and blues vibe for most of the tracks. This was my way of homaging the original artists without coming across as an anachronism even though the Larceny By Dirigible songs are WAY more straightforward compared to most Ospreyshire tracks on this and previous works.

If there was an example of something that really got my gears grinding, it involves the topic of Larceny By Dirigible IV. That was the angriest song of the bunch despite being a mostly acoustic ballad with some subtle keyboards in the background. The song in question is “Taurus” by the band Spirit. My jaw dropped when I heard that guitar riff and I thought “OH MY GOD! ZEPPELIN STOLE THIS TO MAKE STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN!”. This was the musical equivalent of watching a certain Osamu Tezuka anime and realizing that a certain American animation company shamelessly stole from it (you should know what I’m talking about at this point). Zeppelin even opened up for Spirit for some of their first American tours, so they totally knew that song. Seriously, check out this video and tell me no one from that famous band stole from Spirit.

This was maddening and I’m sick of people defending that band even when they lost some of their lawsuits. At the time of this post, Randy California’s (from Spirit) family is appealing the plagiarism lawsuit against Led Zeppelin. His story is so tragic and I referenced part of it in IV. Randy California just waned his band to get credit for “Stairway to Heaven”, but Led Zeppelin refused. Not only that, but he died saving his son from drowning in the ocean after that. Randy California and Spirit didn’t deserve this.

Wouldn’t it also be funny if one of the members admitted to stealing? Oh, wait…

Seriously, shame on this overrated band of thieves and especially that pedophile Jimmy Page. How is it that R. Kelly is locked up and not him for sleeping with minors?

The image of Spirit is from Ultimate Classic Rock.

The image of Led Zeppelin is from Variety.

Dear Innovare Bio and Release Date Confirmed

Ospreyshire has been on a roll recording things in 2019 so far. Besides some compilation exclusives and a couple of singles made, and another EP, there was one thing missing in this discography…a full-length album. A long player was lacking and the solution involved poems and songs for a whole new concept album. The final results involved forty-one of them.

Dear Innovare…The Souls of Ignored Pioneers Shall Be Renowned is the first full-length album from Ospreyshire and it is nothing like any previous EPs or singles. While his trademark acousmatics, avant-garde leanings, and spoken word vocals do return, there are more great additions. There are more organic instruments used this time around and there are songs that incorporate some programmed elements. It’s also a genre roulette of sorts as elements of electronic, acoustic, blues, post-rock, digital hardcore, shoegaze, acapella, folk, and even rap show up in some forms. The production is all lo-fi and DIY, but the result only strengthens the truthful narrative in these stories.

This is a concept album much like previous EPs. Verses Vs. Anhedonia was an autobiography dealing with elements of depression. Pathos Formula Wave: One Score of Rage was a compilation of angry letters to those who hurt in him the past. Dear Innovare is a collage of stories and narratives about numerous creators. These stories involve inventors, doctors, engineers, musicians, animators, filmmakers, business owners, and many more. Many of them have been overlooked for several reasons and some of those people were ripped off by those more famous than them. These tracks are homages to those who were forgotten and some of them simultaneously bash the rip-offs in question. Dear Innovare incorporates smaller song or poem cycles that are part of the larger concept. There’s the About A Benjamin trilogy which is about African-American inventors all named Benjamin who have contributed to innovations still used to this day even though the history classes have been neglectful in talking about them. The Art Theft trilogy is about three specific African nations who’ve had their art and artifacts looted while being placed in European museums. Those nations (Benin, Senegal, and Nigeria) are trying to get what’s rightfully theirs. Larceny By Dirigible is a five-part acoustic rock cycle which excoriates a certain classic rock band who made a career on plagiarizing various blues, folk, and other rock artists. In hindsight, they’re a glorified cover band at best. Pugnam Contra Fures Leonis is a interconnected trilogy which covers one of the most controversial film plagiarism scandals in history as a certain franchise is responsible for a legacy of theft, cultural appropriation (while grossly misrepresenting said cultures), and even an attempt to block something original from getting exposure. At the same time, it honors two different musicians and an animated series that were stolen.

Dear Innovare…The Souls of Ignored Pioneers Shall Be Renowned is an ambitious album and certainly the most creative one Ospreyshire has created thus far. Feel free to to be enlightened by these poems and songs while also immersed in his experimental forms of audio art.

Oh, and by the way…12/27/19. Pre-orders will happen soon. You’re welcome!

ZAP Records Spotlight: Skree Alleen

Hello, everyone!

I’d like to introduce you to South African artist Willem Samuel AKA Skree Alleen. He just dropped a new EP earlier this week called “Artefak” and it’s quite good. It’s certainly no sophomore slump from this artist. Much like Metode en Tegniek, the lyrics are actually in Afrikaans of all things.

Fee free to check it out. It’s only $2 to buy!

ZAP Records Spotlight: Metode en Tegniek

Here’s some more love shown from other musicians who are on ZAP Records, the same label I’m affiliated with.

This is a South African one-man band called Metode en Tegniek.

Their (his?) music is some quirky and incredibly fast folk punk here. All the songs are actually in Afrikaans of all things which is something I’ve never heard in this genre before. I believe fans of Gogol Bordello, AJJ, and Self Proclaimed Narcissist would definitely dig their urgent acoustic music.

ZAP Records Friends Vol. 3 Compilation [FREE Download!]

What’s up, everyone?

ZAP Records has released their third compilation in their Friends Series. There are all kinds of bands including some of my own labelmates from all over the world releasing current and brand new exclusive tunes including this guy! I debuted a new song called “Emancipating Spark” which will be only on the compilation and nowhere else.

What are you waiting for? It’s a free download with 15 songs on it with numerous genres represented.

Also, check out ZAP Records at http://facebook.com/zaprecords.

-Curtis

Friendship Friday: James Silas

This Friendship Friday post is about a British buddy of mine by the name of James Silas.

He’s an experimental folk artist from Newcastle-via-Manchester, England. I’ve known him since he was in his previous band Watercolour and enjoyed his music since then. His first solo album The Man in the Snow White Cell is quite good and it was recorded with James in a makeshift sensory-depriving “prison” where he recorded all the instruments.

Check out his stuff at http://jamessilas.com.

-Curtis

Friendship Friday: Kevin Schlereth

Welcome to another installment of Friendship Friday.

Meet Kevin Schlereth. He’s an acoustic artist from St. Louis, MO whom I’ve known for roughly 6 years now. We met at Cornerstone Festival back then and I’ve seen some of his shows. I like how he has an atypical appraoch to folk music with more technical playing and with meaningful lyrics.

You can get his music for free or pay-what-you-want at https://kevinschlereth.bandcamp.com/

-Curtis