Johnny Depp, Jeff Beck Accused Of Stealing Lyrics From Black Poet Incarcerated In The ’60s

Johnny Depp and Jeff Beck’s new album “18” acquired little reward upon its mid-July launch, however evaluations are actually taking a backseat to accusations of thievery — as their “Sad Motherf**kin’ Parade” tune shares a number of strains with a Nineteen Sixties poem left uncredited within the liner notes.

The “Hobo Ben” poem in query was written by Slim Wilson, a Black vagabond who was convicted for homicide and was later incarcerated for armed theft, in keeping with Rolling Stone. Wilson met American folklorist Bruce Jackson in 1964 whereas Wilson was within the Missouri State Penitentiary.

Although Wilson’s actual identify stays a thriller, Jackson stated he was “one of the best narrators” he’d ever come throughout. Jackson featured “Hobo Ben,” amongst many different toasts and poems of Wilson’s, in his 1974 e-book “Get Your Ass in the Water and Swim Like Me.”

Wilson carried out his work for Jackson’s 1976 album of the identical identify, just for “Hobo Ben” to make a shocking comeback a long time later. Jackson, now a distinguished professor on the College of Buffalo, believes Depp and Beck completely “ripped” them off.

Depp and Beck’s tune contains quite a few strains of Wilson’s, together with “‘Cause if the Man come you make a sad motherfuckin’ parade”; “I’m raggedy, I know, but I have no stink”; “God bless the lady that’ll buy me a drink,” and “What that funky motherfucker really needs, child, is a bath.”

“The only two lines I could find in the whole piece that [Depp and Beck] contributed are ‘Big time motherfucker’ and ‘Bust it down to my level,’” Jackson instructed Rolling Stone. “Everything else is from Slim’s performance in my book.”

“I’ve never encountered anything like this,” added Jackson. “I’ve been publishing stuff for 50 years, and this is the first time anybody has just ripped something off and put his own name on it.”

Whereas Jackson gave each particular person he interviewed in jail an alias to guard them from potential strife with wardens, he believes Depp and Beck had a authorized obligation to credit score him, Wilson, and the copyrighted works that the lyrics appeared in.

His son, Michael Lee Jackson, stated the liner notes “do not reflect the actual authorship of those lyrics,” in keeping with The Guardian. The father and son are actually contemplating attainable authorized motion in opposition to Depp and Beck.

“It’s just not plausible, in my opinion, that Johnny Depp or anybody else could have sat down and crafted those lyrics without almost wholly taking them from some version of my father’s recording and/or book where they appeared,” stated Michael Lee Jackson.

A spokesperson for the “18” album has since instructed Rolling Stone that they’ve initiated an “enquiry relating to the song ‘Sad Motherfuckin’ Parade’” to determine if “further copyright credit will likely be added to all types of the album.