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Music

Johnny Depp and Jeff Beck accused of stealing lines of poem for a song

Both Johnny Depp and Jeff Beck have been accused of stealing the lines from an old poem for the track ‘Sad Motherfuckin’ Parade’ on their collaborative album 18.

The poem, entitled ‘Hobo Ben’ features in a 1974 book of toasts – Get Your Ass In The Water And Swim Like Me by Bruce Jackson, as reported by Rolling Stone.

It centres around a man named Slim Wilson, and features the lines: “Ladies of culture and beauty so refined, is there one among you that would grant me wine?/ I’m raggedy I know, but I have no stink / And God bless the lady that’ll buy me a drink/ Heavy-hipted Hattie turned to Nadine with a laugh / And said, ‘What that funky motherfucker really need, child, is a bath.”

Depp and Beck’s song has allegedly lifted an assortment of lines from the poem, including: “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.”

Jackson has claimed that hasn’t been credited by Depp or Beck.“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’. Everything else is from Slim’s performance in my book,” he told the publication.

He continued: “I’ve never encountered anything like this. 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.”

Jackson’s son, Michael Lee Jackson also claimed that he was exploring possible legal options, but was keen to stress that no lawsuit has been filed as of yet. However, he did claim that the credits on ‘Sad Motherfuckin’ Parade’ are currently incorrect.

“They do not reflect the actual authorship of those lyrics,” he said. “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.”

Representatives for Johnny Depp and Jeff Beck are yet to comment on the matter.

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