Local Current Blog

Today’s Music News: Did ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ rip off an Australian hit?

Australian music website Max TV is raising a question that’s come up before in fan forums: Did Guns N’ Roses steal “Sweet Child O’ Mine” from the band Australian Crawl? There are a number of similarities between GNR’s 1987 hit and “Unpublished Critics,” a song from Australian Crawl’s popular 1983 album Phalanx. Australian Crawl broke up in 1986; the band’s frontman James Reyne has acknowledged similarities between the two songs, but has never pursued legal action; in fact, he’s even covered “Sweet Child O’ Mine” in concert. (Consequence of Sound) Below, listen to Jill Riley and Sean McPherson play samples of the two songs and discuss the similarities.

  1. Listen Sweet Child O’ Mine vs. Unpublished Critics

Prince released his tribute song “Baltimore” on SoundCloud before playing a Sunday night Baltimore concert that was live-streamed via Tidal. The concert, Prince’s first Baltimore performance in 14 years, marked the live debut of “Baltimore” and featured guest performances by MiguelDoug E. Fresh, and Estelle. Prince invited State’s Attorney Marilyn J. Mosby to join him; Mosby appeared onstage and waved to the crowd, but didn’t make any remarks. (Baltimore Sun)

Miley CyrusJoan Jett, and Laura Jane Grace covered the Replacements‘ “Androgynous” in a video for Cyrus’s new Happy Hippie nonprofit, raising awareness of homeless youth and GLBT issues. (Local Current)

Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney threw out the first pitch at Saturday night’s Seattle Mariners game, and she totally nailed it. (Stereogum)

Ozzy Osbourne was so impressed by a teen all-percussion version of his song “Crazy Train” that he donated $10,000 to the Louisville, Kentucky music education nonprofit that made the performance happen. (Rolling Stone)

David Byrne has been appointed to the board of directors of SoundExchange, the performance rights organization that administers royalty payments for Internet radio in the United States. (Billboard) To understand SoundExchange’s role, check out our Music Rights 101 guide.

U2 bounced back from Bono‘s bike accident with a boisterous appearance on The Tonight Show on Friday. The show featured footage of the band busking in the New York subway, as well as Bono getting back on a bike with Jimmy Fallon by his side. (Billboard)

Blur have landed the highest-charting album of their career with The Magic Whip, which landed at #24 on the Billboard 200. (Billboard) Read Jim McGuinn’s review of the new album.

A clip of the suddenly-controversial Amy Winehouse documentary Amy has been released. The film was made with the approval of Winehouse’s family, who then condemned the completed film once they saw it. It’s scheduled for release in the U.K. this summer, but no U.S. release has yet been announced. (Billboard)

Meanwhile, the Jimi Hendrix estate has approved an official biopic directed by Paul Greengrass (Captain Phillips) and written by Scott Silver (8 Mile). Jimi: All Is By My Side, last year’s biopic starring André 3000, was unauthorized and didn’t feature any actual Hendrix recordings. (Rolling Stone)

The Walker Art Center has announced its 2015 Music and Movies schedule, featuring performances by Gary LourisChastity Brown, All Tomorrow’s Petty, and Mark McGee. (Local Current)