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The Myth of Ownership

Richie 14 Nov 14 - 06:44 PM
Richie 14 Nov 14 - 07:07 PM
Mark Ross 14 Nov 14 - 07:13 PM
Richie 14 Nov 14 - 07:14 PM
Richie 14 Nov 14 - 07:23 PM
Richie 14 Nov 14 - 07:33 PM
Richie 14 Nov 14 - 07:39 PM
Richie 14 Nov 14 - 07:49 PM
Richie 14 Nov 14 - 07:58 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 14 Nov 14 - 08:19 PM
GUEST,# 14 Nov 14 - 09:52 PM
Bert 14 Nov 14 - 10:24 PM
Richie 14 Nov 14 - 11:07 PM
Joe Offer 15 Nov 14 - 02:33 AM
GUEST,Mike Yates 15 Nov 14 - 03:55 AM
GUEST,Jim Knowledge 15 Nov 14 - 10:28 AM
Richie 15 Nov 14 - 12:47 PM
GUEST,Joseph Scott 15 Nov 14 - 02:24 PM
Richie 15 Nov 14 - 04:41 PM
Richie 15 Nov 14 - 04:59 PM
GUEST,Steve Shaw musing 15 Nov 14 - 07:07 PM
Deckman 15 Nov 14 - 09:26 PM
BobL 16 Nov 14 - 03:59 AM
GUEST,Steve Shaw 16 Nov 14 - 06:04 AM
Steve Gardham 16 Nov 14 - 04:31 PM
Richie 17 Nov 14 - 01:19 AM
BobL 17 Nov 14 - 03:43 AM
GUEST,Howard Jones 17 Nov 14 - 04:56 AM
GUEST,Joseph Scott 17 Nov 14 - 01:27 PM
GUEST,Joseph Scott 17 Nov 14 - 01:34 PM
Steve Gardham 17 Nov 14 - 03:09 PM
Richie 17 Nov 14 - 04:00 PM
Richie 17 Nov 14 - 04:18 PM
GUEST,Steve Shaw 17 Nov 14 - 05:54 PM
GUEST 18 Nov 14 - 09:08 AM
Steve Gardham 18 Nov 14 - 09:12 AM
Steve Gardham 18 Nov 14 - 09:58 AM
GUEST 18 Nov 14 - 09:59 AM
IamNoMan 18 Nov 14 - 12:00 PM
Richie 18 Nov 14 - 04:53 PM
GUEST,ollaimh 18 Nov 14 - 10:46 PM
GUEST,Joseph Scott 19 Nov 14 - 05:32 PM
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Subject: Folklore: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 06:44 PM

Hi,

I know this topic has been explored here before. I was thinking about writing a book or article on the topic. Something similar to Fakesong by Harker but focusing on the Unites States in the 1900s which was the important era of collecting and copyrighting many folk songs.

I need your comments and feedback. And would you name names of the liars? What are the consequences? Here's what I have as an opening:

The Myth of Ownership: Folk Song in 20th Century America

Who owns a folks song? I mean, who really owns it? If, by definition, we say that a folk song is written by an anonymous person, how do we award copyright and assign ownership of a song that claims to be owned by no one?

And who are the owners of folks songs? Are they the people that collect them? Are they the people that sing them? Is it the first person to claim ownership? Do they own the song?

The Sonny Bono law has extended ownership of folk songs in the United States for twenty-five years. It's now stuck at 1923. Who benefits from this?" "You got me babe?"

And does this right of ownership have such a power over men and women that it makes them lie and covet and steal? Who are the liars? And why do they lie? I's it for money- it is prestige?

----

Richie


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 07:07 PM

This would examine all the main collectors, performers and some songs.

1) Focusing on the 1920s Country Music songs. For example Governor Jimmy "You Are My Sunshine" Davis, Ralph Peer, Carter Family, Jimmy Rodgers, Skillet Lickers- practically every early Country publisher, promoter, manager and singer (some are notorious and hilarious). Some controversial songs, Wreck of the Old 97/ Prisoner's Song etc

2) Focusing on the Folk collectors and singers. Josiah Combs 1911 to West Virginia(Carey Woofter/ Patrick Gainer); Kyle Davis Jr. 1929, to More Trad. Ballads 1960 Virgina (Smith Brothers). John Jacob Niles. . there are a lot of names these are some.

3) Focusing on the ethicacy of copyrights- Tom Dooley etc

Richie


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Myth of Ownership
From: Mark Ross
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 07:13 PM

It's the money, not that there was all that much for the singers, but for some collectors it was the only way to finance their scholarship. For them it was the love of the music. For the record companies and the publishers (who realized that "there was gold in them thar hills.") they didn't necessarily have pay out much in royalties. Pete Seeger once told the tale of talking to secretary at the record company to give her the information on songs he had just recorded. When he told her that BARBARA ALLEN was traditional, to his amazement she replied, Oh, Thank you." It meant that they wouldn't have to pay out composer royalties. If Pete had copyrighted his arrangement of the song he would have collected that money, but he didn't even think of doing that.


Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Folklore: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 07:14 PM

Some of these people heirs are still receiving royalties- thanks Sonny! I know from past experience that if you mess with them - and I have before- that there will be trouble.

I'm not trying to bring anyone down - I just want the truth- and after all, it's my opinion of the truth,

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 07:23 PM

Take Tom Dooley- after the record company (and Kingston Trio) made millions of dollars, Lomax and Warner (mainly Warner) decided Frank Proffitt should have some of the money (and he was dirt poor- my grandfather knew his father- in- law well they had no money). I'm fine with them getting Frank some money- but he didn't write Tom Dooley - he got it from his Aunt Nancy Prather- plus it was already recorded many years before!!!

So what to do?

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 07:33 PM

Mark, I gave Mel Bay a list of songs for one of my books, some of the songs they rejected as copyrighted but they were PD and some of the songs that they approved were copyrighted- but they said they were ok.

They didn't know- plus they didn't want to challenge, for example, Governor Jimmy Davis' copyright on You are My Sunshine-- a song he claimed to write- even tho really he bought a bogus copyright.

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 07:39 PM

I know Clayton McMichen swore he wrote "Bile Them Cabbage Down," his championship fiddle tune, and at one point had some type of copyright [person letter to attorney] on it. His daughter, Juanita, was receiving royalties for copyright of "In the Pines" just a few years ago- I'm not sure if she's still around anymore- great lady.

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 07:49 PM

And how many people have heard a version of a folk song and wanted to make a recording of the song, a PD song, but changed the song lyrics so they wouldn't have to pay a licensing fee?

Or how many people wanted to record a PD song and heard someone version and copied it, maybe changing it some?

And how many people have used the melody of someone's PD song with different lyrics- not giving them credit?

And how many people have taken PD lyrics and used then without giving credit?

Just checking?

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 07:58 PM

Are the liars and cheaters us? Or is this just something everyone does- and it's OK. Was it OK for Percy to write songs in the Reliques? Or Buchan to have ballads just 5 stanzas longer than anyone elses?
Is it OK for John Jacob Niles to rewrite some lyrics he collected and maybe invent a story of two to go with it?

Is it OK?

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 08:19 PM

RE: "So what to do?"

Continue to play, enjoy, and have fun.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

Let the lawyers starve...the courts are flooded with briefs and boxers.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,#
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 09:52 PM

What happened to John Fogerty is a travesty. However, he's still got the voice and the chops.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Bert
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 10:24 PM

Us true folkies sing the old songs and still worship trees.

Let me tell you, we got that Bono chappie good and proper.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 14 Nov 14 - 11:07 PM

Gargoyle- you're right of course. If it's not fun, why do it. So is this an endorsement?

John's a fortunate son, I bought a guitar for him but I was too busy to sell it to him personally- one of my friends did.

I think it was George of the Jungle who in his infinite wisdom said the immortal words, "Watch out for that tree!!"

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Joe Offer
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 02:33 AM

I'm working on the Rise Again songbook, sequel to Rise Up Singing. The publisher, Hal Leonard, is getting most of the copyright permissions, But I've had to track down some of the harder ones (my 30 years of experience as a federal investigator taught me how to track people down).

I don't know what we're going to do on permissions for some of the songs in the Blues chapter. Many came from the late 1920s and early 1930s; and some were recorded over and over again by many performers, each one changing the song a bit or a lot. On so many of these old songs, the ownership is unclear. I hate for some corporation to get paid for something made up by a blues singer who never got much compensation. If Sonny Bono hadn't gotten in the way, all these songs would be free of any doubt, because the old law would have made everything published before 1940 to be in the public domain by the time our book comes out in 2015.

So, it's tough. And you get the feeling that the royalties on old songs aren't going to anyone who deserves them.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Mike Yates
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 03:55 AM

You might like to read a short article that I wrote some years back on this question. It is called "Who Owns the Game? A Question of Cultural Patrimony" and can be found on www.mustrad.org.uk It is #22 in the "Enthusiasms" section of the magazine.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Jim Knowledge
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 10:28 AM

I `ad that Simon Garfunkfel in my cab the other day. `e `ad just been up Tin Pan Alley trying to flog a couple of numbers at `arry Steins Publishing `ouse. By the look on `is kisser I don`t think they `ad cut the mustard.
I said, "Morning Maestro, Where to then?"
`e said, "Back `ome for the moment Jim. I`ve got some re-writing to do"
I put the radio on and it was playing someone singing "The Seeds of Love"
`e said, "`ere, that`s a lovely song, Jim. I wish I `ad written it."
I said, "Don`t worry Chum. In a few years, you will have!!"

Whaddam I Like??


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 12:47 PM

Joe, I doubt anyone will come after you since there's not much money involved. It's only the more popular blues songs that possibly could create a problem. Litigation is expensive so most publishers are practical enough to not worry about it- plus I doubt anyone will even notice or care.

Mike- gr8 article- love your articles and liner notes. Many early country musician the same people you collected from in Far in the Mountains, had the same pride of ownership for any song they sang or recorded. It was simply- "their song" and anyone who sang "their song" was stealing form them. They didn't consider that someone else may have got the song just like they did- and that it wasn't really their song. I don't think that "patrimony" as I understand it- passing ownership to a subsequent generation- is the same in the US.

I don't think there can be ownership unless you can prove the song was original and had no oral transmission. Most of the songs that Ralph Peer copyrighted in the 1920s and 1930s from the Carter family for example were folk songs, which he and his family heirs received royalties on probably until the 1960s and 1970s- songs like the Wildwood Flower and Worried Man blues.

I wonder if the copyrights are still there but not enforced.

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Joseph Scott
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 02:24 PM

Was it OK for Jack Niles to lie time and again: That one's easy, no. Did Bascom Lunsford lie about when he heard what? Charlie Bowman? Ernest Stoneman? John Hurt? Mance Lipscomb? Gary Davis? Howard Odum? Newman White? Thomas Talley? Zora Neale Hurston? Roy Carew? W.C. Handy? Mary Wheeler? Emmet Kennedy? Frederic Ramsey? Niles was an outlier.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 04:41 PM

Ty Joseph,

Here's an example of a ballad I just finished Maggie Hammons version of Young Henerly Child 68:
http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/young-henerly--hammons-wv-1970-recording.aspx

The recording I have for Hammons is from 1970- Patrick Gainer (Folk Songs from the West Virginia Hills) collected it from her 3 months earlier- and- he rewrote the last three verses. Why? Maybe because she couldn't remember a part in one line- there's no other reason. With Gainer it's standard practice to have one text attributed to three different informants - in three different publications!!!

This is the type of thing people don't know about. What happens is: Steve Gardham is doing research on Child 295 and only one version in the US has a phrase "the Brown Girl." So he doesn't know about Gainer so he writes there's only one US version . . .

That's just one example. Joseph, if you want to read about African-American collectors read Chappell's book about John Henry.

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 04:59 PM

I was referring to Guy Johnson's book, "John Henry: Tracking Down a Negro Legend," and Chappell's comments about his documentation of facts. My friend John Garst would be the person to talk to about that.

I got through reading Chappell book earlier this year,

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw musing
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 07:07 PM

Twenty years ago, Ron Kavana did a gig at our folk club. John Maughan, who ran the club, had been singing Ron's song "Reconciliation" for several years, and he asked Ron if it was OK for him to sing it (they ended up doing a duet). Ron said that he was delighted that anyone should want to sing his song, as a song only has a life when it's sung. Great attitude, not one shared by everyone in folk music. Of course, no-one should even begin to think of making money out of someone else's stuff without paying their dues. The only moral thing to do is to try your damnedest to track down who, if they exist, should be paid royalties. It would be nice to think that we folkies would always have the natural instinct to do that to the best of our ability. Dammit, Shaw, you and your bloody Utopian ideals...


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Deckman
Date: 15 Nov 14 - 09:26 PM

This is a very good topic and one that will likely never get resolved in my lifetime. I have recorded a little and purposfully stayed very small and "under the radar" just to avoid all this crap. What I think is so very sad, is that this issue is yet another reflection of the inherit greed associated with the wonderful world of "capitalism." CHEERS, bob(deckman)nelson


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: BobL
Date: 16 Nov 14 - 03:59 AM

I've put a clause in my Will that on my death my dances, and any other intellectual property of which I own the copyright, will go into the public domain. Not that any of it has any commercial value, I just want to prevent future legal hassle.

Perhaps some others should do / should have done the same.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Nov 14 - 06:04 AM

If you want to "stay small", which is what I did when I made a CD some years ago (just wanted to cover my costs, really), it doesn't cost that much to get a licence to produce, say, a couple of hundred copies or fewer, as long as not too much of your stuff is copyright. My MCPS licence to cover 100 copies at £8 each cost twelve quid (that was in 2004). That covered two or three tunes and one song that were copyright, the rest of my stuff being "trad arr" as far as I could humanly discern (I did try hard). Hardly enough to put the fear of God into one for doing the right thing.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 16 Nov 14 - 04:31 PM

Hi Richie,
Whilst it is obviously immoral to tell lies about the material you collect and publish, you also have to look at the background to the processes involved, historically, geographically, sociologically, even commercially.

Many of the people who have been accused were pioneers and had little precedent to go on. Others were simply following the precedent of these. Some (Motherwell, Scott) regretted their interference.

Harker's 'Fakesong', whilst unfortunately flawed by overemphasised political motives, gives a fair account of what was going on.

Many of the so-called 'fakers' were simply altering their sources in order to make their publications saleable to the intended audience.

Where field notes survive as with Percy, Baring Gould, and a few others not a great deal of damage has been done. The truth comes out eventually. But unfortunately in the case of the likes of Peter Buchan and Bert Lloyd there are no field notes and consequently the whole of their work comes under suspicion and is flawed.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 01:19 AM

Hi Steve,

I want to promote the free use of folk material. I want it to be real, honest and ethical. The stories about the songs and the people who sang them are engaging and worthy of a book or a series of articles.

And as you said, the processes that created the popularity of the song are dependent on the place, time, and location. Then in the 1920s gold was found in the hills of Appalachia. It wasn't panned - it was spun on wax cylinders. Suddenly Ralph Peer was making 450 million dollars a year (in today's money) off the royalties of folk songs (and some originals) by the mid to late 1920s.

Not only was money made- lives were changed, the singers and their songs were an important part of Appalachian life in the early 1900s untouched by the music industry because singing ballads was part of life. Songs are still a relevant part of the fabric of society- folk music still touches peoples lives.

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: BobL
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 03:43 AM

"You don't own a folk tune, you simply borrow it for a while. We simply borrowed these tunes. They have already been returned" - The Danish String Quartet on their CD "Wood Works".
Some people, at least, have the right idea.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Howard Jones
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 04:56 AM

As an observation, the systems for handling copyright are based on music-industry practices, with the assumption that copyright will belong to a "publisher". It assumes that the composer will have contracted with a publisher. Similarly with recordings, the system assumes this belongs to the producer, and the musicians are mere employees. This doesn't reflect reality in the independent music sector as a whole, let alone in the world of traditional music.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Joseph Scott
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 01:27 PM

Hi Richie,

Here's an example of another John-Jacob-Niles-like outright fabricator who affects those of us interested in 19th-century American folk music: Thomas Beer. Beer is the source for those persistent stories about "Frankie And Albert" being sung before 1870. The Stephen Crane expert Paul Sorrentino has described Beer's biography of Crane: "Beer had altered the chronology of Crane's life, invented incidents, and composed letters allegedly from Crane. The pattern of fabrication is evident from the onset. Letters supposedly written by Crane are quoted in an early draft of the biography, then substantially revised in a later draft to fit scenarios involving other people, who, it turns out, are themselves apparently fictional."


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Joseph Scott
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 01:34 PM

"Many of the people who have been accused were pioneers and had little precedent to go on." What does that have to do with lying, though?


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 03:09 PM

There has been an overlap in many people's minds between the 2 separate issues of out-and-out dishonesty and literary interference, i.e., some of the collectors/antiquarians can only be accused of one of these and others indulged in both and there are different degrees of dishonesty involved. Some collectors silently included their own work in their publications using such titles as 'Ancient Ballads' and others went to great lengths to proclaim that every word came from the mouths of the 'folk' when this is patently not true.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 04:00 PM

I'm working on the US versions of Love Henry child 68.

In 1993 Bob Dylan took word for word a version from Bryan Arnold's 'Folksongs of Alabama.' Arnold collected it in 1945 from Lena Hill.
Dyland has copyrighted the version.

Is this OK?

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 04:18 PM

Here are some of the issues associated with Hill's version of Love Henry.

Hill learned the song "Love Henry" from her grandfather around 1898. It was copyrighted by Arnold in 1950. So since it was learned in 1898 - is the copyright by Arnold valid?

Then is it OK for Dylan to use it and copyright it?: Copyright ©1993 Special Rider Music

Is it morally and ethically wrong fro Dylan not to give Arnold and Hill credit?

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 05:54 PM

And Bob, infamously, failed to credit Nic Jones when, in 1992, he copied Nic's arrangement of Canadee-i-o.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 09:08 AM

Richie,
If something is in public domain and it can be proved (which it can easily in most cases) then anyone can copyright an ARRANGEMENT which prevents anyone else copyrighting that arrangement. Dylan, as far as I know, has only copyrighted arrangements of songs and if anyone else sang what can be determined as their own arrangement Dylan would not be able to sue successfully (in theory).

Of course if you refer to morals then anyone who copyrights a piece they haven't bought or written is immoral.......unless, as in some cases the publisher insists on the song being copyright as a matter of course, and some editors copyright traditional material simply to prevent some other unscrupulous person from doing the same and making money from it. I know because I have experienced this in my own editing. The material was copyrighted but inside the book it states clearly anyone can use the material without permission for non-commercial purposes as long as sources are acknowledged. This can also be stretched to small runs of CDs etc. This may have been the case with Arnold.

All of the material on the Yorkshire Garland website is freely available for non-commercial or educational use with acknowledged sources, and where the song has a known writer the writer's permission is sought.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 09:12 AM

Last GUEST was me.

Short answer. Yes: It was morally and ethically wrong for Dylan not to have acknowledged his sources.

Having said that I picked up many of the songs in my current repertoire by osmosis and for many of them the sources are either long-forgotten or multiple.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 09:58 AM

2 posts back: last phrase should of course say ......the writer's permission must be sought.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 09:59 AM

" anyone can copyright an ARRANGEMENT"

How do you know that? Show me the word 'arrangement' in a copyright law.

In today's musical era, when folkies write down the chords and improvise, who knows exactly what a certain person's arrangement is?

When rock musicians send their hands skittering over keyboards and the music goes straight from finger to digital file, who knows what an arrangement is?


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: IamNoMan
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 12:00 PM

The whole issue of ownership of Traditional songs is annoying as can be. As a performer I deliberately do Covers, to encourage audience participation. I always do it my way though. There are no "babes" in my cover of MACK THE KNIFE. MACK THE KNIFE is my favorite murder ballad. The original was written for "The Beggars Opera" in 1728 by John Gay. The main character was MacHeath, -Based upon the exploits of one Jack Sheppard. Weill and Brecht Published their version in conjunction with "Die Dreigroschenoper", in German. Within five years it had been translated into 18 languages. Many many people have covered this song over the years. From Satchmo to Darren to Buble different versions have been published, not including parodies. John Willet re-translated Brecht's lyric in the 1970s(?). Here is the last stanza:

And the child bride in her nightie,
Whose assailant's still at large
Violated in her slumbers-
Mackie how much did you charge?

You sure don't hear that version very often!

I do not pretend to know the current regulations for copyright of songs. I think the "original author and their heirs are entitled to compensation for 100 years after the death of the composer". I may be wrong about this. And this is in the USA, not Britain and certainly not in China.

I have "run" several folk clubs over the years. Occasional some jerk makes a stink about BMI or ASCAP royalties. Lots of extra work to do when one wants to enjoy the music! Songs in the Public Domain Do the copyright holders get the money when their song is performed? Not bloody likely!

I do not like but do admire what Patty and Mildred Hill, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU - 1893; did to protect their Intellectual property rights. In one specific instance in February 2010, these royalties were said to amount to $700. Not bad for a six note song, Ehh! Happy Birthday to You

Enough of my rants. Lets talk about The new Version of "Rise Up Singing", Joe is working on. Peter Blood and Annie Patterson "wrote" the original, Based upon "Winds of the People". Presumably Sing Out will be publishing this. Mark Moss is currently the head of Sing Out, or whatever the name of the publishing company is. He has published some revised editions over the years. All of the people mentioned above are living, (AFAIK), All of them are interested in getting the songs out to the people. What kind of copyright or disclosures should be made in publishing the new book to protect the financial interests of the parties involved but allow public use of the materials by us without the intervention by greed heads. Maybe it should be published in China?


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: Richie
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 04:53 PM

The way I understand it (in the US): you can copyright an arrangement. Even if the song is PD, you can take legal action against someone that copies your arrangement.

You can record any song as long as you pay the mechanical licensing fee.

However, you can't print or republish any recent folk songs that were first in print or copyrighted after 1923 with out getting permission. Then in 1023 it will change one year every year.

In order to challenge this you'd have to prove the song existed before 1923 or that the song existed before the copyright date (say it was 1932)- making the copyright invalid.

Does this seem accurate?

As for Dylan, he should have given the source of his text since it was exact (he did add one measure). And since Dylan did not copy the melody of the song- he has copyrighted an arrangement of "Love Henry."
Technically, he should have gotten permission from Arnold to use it.

Arnold did not pay anything as most collectors didn't to Hall for singing it. It seems unfair that she (or now her heirs) would not be eligible for compensation. The copyright by Arnold would be 1950- however, many of the songs were learned much earlier. The question of proving the date of the folk song arises.

Richie


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,ollaimh
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 10:46 PM

American intellectual property laws are an extension of the neo con agenda to monitize everything. the best (or worst example) is "in the jungle the might jungle the lion sleeps tonite"/ soloman lindy, who wrote the melody and the same first cerse in an African langauga(Zulu I think). got nothing. pete seeger didn't copywrite his version, but the first hit maker with it did and because he had those firs tten words copywrit he got it all.

good thing you were a federal investigator joe, you could help us find Nazi's in hiding--oh but you don't want to find Nazis!!!maybe you could help find Bernard law instead.


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Subject: RE: The Myth of Ownership
From: GUEST,Joseph Scott
Date: 19 Nov 14 - 05:32 PM

"pete seeger didn't copywrite his version" Yes he did: "Wimoweh; adaptation and arrangement by Paul Campbell [pseud.]"

"'Wimoweh'... which Pete Seeger transcribed from a South African recording...." -- _World Telegram_, 1/11/50.

"To those songs which were published during the period between 1950 and 1953 we assigned the name 'Paul Campbell'...." -- _The Weavers Song Book_, copyright 1960.

The "enlargements of fragments of otherwise forgotten songs" by "Paul Campbell" in that song book included "When The Saints Go Marching In." Louis Armstrong was already famous when he recorded "When The Saints Go Marching In" in 1938, two years after the song was included in the hit Warner Brothers film The Green Pastures (which was mentioned by name in _Newsweek_ in 1936 when discussing Warner Brothers' recent strong earnings). The Golden Gate Quartet were also famous when they recorded it, also in 1938 (reissued with a different flipside in 1948). Mitchell's Christian Singers recorded it in 1938, Sleepy John Estes in 1941, Bunk Johnson in 1945, the Coleman Brothers in 1947, the Rainy City Jazz Band in 1947, Sidney Bechet in 1949. Wingy Manone (a popular white singer and trumpeter influenced by Armstrong) recorded it in 1939 and performed it for a '40s Soundie film. Uncle Rich Brown recorded it for the Library of Congress in 1940. Bob Wills played it on the radio in 1940. A band played it before General Patton in 1945. Graeme Bell's Australian Jazz Band were performing it by 1948, Sharkey Bonano by 1949, Kid Ory in 1949. The Golden Echoes recorded it for Specialty, The Five Trumpets for RCA Victor, and the Chuck Wagon Gang for Columbia, all in 1949. Armstrong performed it the 1947 Hollywood film New Orleans, and on both NBC-TV and CBS-TV in 1949. "Otherwise forgotten"?

And then there was the "Sylvie" that Leadbelly knew long before he met the Weavers, and they decided needed work...


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