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Johnny Depp and Jeff Beck accused of stealing lyrics from incarcerated man's poem

A spokesperson for the duo said the allegations were being considered

Actor Johnny Depp joins musician Jeff Beck on stage during a concert, in Gateshead, Britain June 2, 2022.
Actor Johnny Depp performing with musician Jeff Beck during a concert in Gateshead, England, June 2, 2022. Lianne Templeman (via Reuters)

Johnny Depp and British music legend Jeff Beck announce new collaboration album was accused of plagiarizing a folk ballad performed by a prison inmate at 18.

The song titled "Sad Motherfuckin' Parade" on the album lifts many lines from "Hobo His Ben", a verse and song performed by Slim Wilson. It looks like According to Rolling Stone magazine,

a spokesperson for the duo said the allegations were being reviewed:

"We are considering an investigation into this song. Sad Motherfuckin' Parade on Jeff Beck and Johnny Depp's eighteenth album.Additional copyright credits are added to all forms of the album where appropriate."

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1964, Folklore Scholar Bruce Jackson met Slim, whose real name was Willie Davis, and Slim was in the Missouri State Penitentiary who chanted verses and toasts, in vulgar and comical form, of black narrative poetry. According to Stone, for Jackson Slim was "one of his best narrators" of Poetry and Cheers he had ever seen.

Jackson recorded and included a transcription of Cheers' "Hobo Ben" in his 1974 book Get Your Ass in The Water and Swim Like Me.

Several lines of Cheers appeared on Beck and Depp's "Sad Motherfuckin' Parade" with the title included, although he is the only two credited songwriters on the track.

Nearly 60 years after Slim's performance was recorded, "I'm ragged, but I don't smell bad," and "God bless the woman who buys me a drink." Into", "Oh my God, I really need a funky motherfucker, kid take a bath" also appears in the song.

Jackson said he had never seen such blatant plagiarism.

"The only two lines I found of him in all the work that [Dep and Beck] contributed were 'Big Time Motherfucker' and 'Bust it down to my 'level,'" Jackson said. ``Everything else is from Slim's performance in my book.

Depp performs on stage with Beck during the Helsinki Blues Festival in Helsinki.
Depp performs on stage with Beck at the Helsinki Blues Festival in Helsinki Photo Credit: JUSSI NUKARI /Lehtikuva/AFP via Getty Images

Jackson's son, Michael Lee Jackson, a lawyer specializing in music and knowledge in a property litigation, he and his father are exploring legal options, but the lawsuit is pending.

"They do not reflect the actual authorship of the lyrics," he said. "In my opinion, the fact that Johnny Depp or anyone else was able to sit down and work out those lyrics without quoting almost entirely from my father's recordings and book versions is a shame.

But like most arts of oral lore, "Hobo Ben" has no definitive author, so the toast is litigious. may be difficult. Slim told Jackson that he learned toast from his father.

Jackson told Rolling's Stone magazine that what bothers him is the ethical failure of not crediting the artist's name.

"I don't know if this record sells," he said of the 18-year-old. But if it sells, Johnny Depp is making big bucks on it.Should I go to him or go to a place that helps the people who created this culture.

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