In a decision that legal experts say may spell out doom for so-called ‘sound-alike music,’ a New Zealand judge has ordered the country’s main conservative political party to pay Eminem’s publisher for their use of a song that closely mimics the 8-Mile song “Lose Yourself,” during a 2014 campaign run.
The National Party purchased a tune called “Eminem-esque” from the stock music library, Beatbox, for its parallels to the movie-score track. Beatbox is known for selling well-known tunes that are tweaked in an attempt to avoid lawsuits over breach of copyright laws. Publisher, Eight Mile Style, learned of TNP’s use of the tune on more than 100 occasions to help promote its platform three years ago and decided to take legal action.
On Wednesday, October 25, the court ruled that the track in question was “sufficiently similar” to the original work, and agreed that “The nature of the use is not what Eminem or Eight Mile Style would endorse.” The judgment was based on similarities to the drum patterns, background chords, and violin tones used on the epic 2002 track, which went on to become the first rap single to ever win a Grammy Award for Best Original Song (2003).
The National Party is responsible for forking over damages to the tune of $415,000 for the breach.