Local Current Blog

Today’s Music News: Court issues opinion in “Let’s Go Crazy” dancing baby case

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has issued an opinion in a long-running case that pits YouTube user Stephanie Lenz against Universal Music, which told YouTube to pull a 2007 clip of a baby dancing to Prince‘s song “Let’s Go Crazy.” Lenz argued that a few seconds of music playing in the background of a dancing-baby video constituted fair use under U.S. copyright, and the case has been in litigation for over eight years. In the most recent opinion, the appeals court states that copyright owners (in this case, Universal) must consider standards of fair use before demanding that content be taken down. The case is continuing to proceed to trial, and Billboard speculates that the two parties might consider a bid for review by the U.S. Supreme Court.

In other Prince news, his new album HITNRUN is now the first music to be sold by Tidal in the form of a physical CD. Tidal, which exclusively premiered the album in streaming form, is also selling downloads of the music, as are other retailers. (Billboard)

Guitarist Gary Richrath has died at age 65. Richrath was a member of REO Speedwagon for 19 years, from 1970—three years after the band’s founding—through the band’s 1980s heyday. Richrath left the band in 1989, released one solo album, and briefly reunited with his former bandmates in 2013 for a storm-relief benefit concert. “Gary was both a unique guitarist and songwriter,” wrote REO Speedwagon frontman Kevin Cronin in the wake of the news, “and the embodiment of the tough guy with a heart of gold.” (USA Today)

Jack White and Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney have buried the hatchet, they both say, after an hourlong phone conversation on Monday morning. Early that morning, Carney tweeted that White had “tried to fight me” on Sunday night at a New York bar. (Rolling Stone)

Sharon Jones has shared the news that her pancreatic cancer has returned. Jones was first diagnosed with cancer in 2013, and beat the disease at that time with aggressive medical treatment. At a Toronto International Film Festival screening of Miss Sharon Jones!, a documentary about her ordeal, Jones revealed the news about the cancer’s return, saying “I start chemo on Wednesday. But I’m gonna keep fighting. We got a long way to go.” (Rolling Stone)

The Libertines have revealed that the decisions to cancel two recent U.K. shows were made due to Pete Doherty‘s anxiety. “Anxiety is a condition affecting many thousands of people in the country,” said the band in a statement. “It is often not discussed or hidden by the sufferer for fear of stigmatisation and indeed the condition makes the victim hide away which worsens the condition.” (Pitchfork)

Will there be an OutKast biopic? Big Boi told a Reddit user that he and André 3000 were “just discussing this. Stay tuned.” (Billboard)

“Neil Fest,” held at the Bowery Ballroom on Sunday and Monday nights, is a star-studded tribute to the music of Neil Young. Performers on Sunday night included Ryan AdamsNorah Jones, and Valerie June. (Pitchfork)

The Jazz Bakery, an L.A. music venue and nonprofit organization named for its original home in a former bakery, is getting a brand new home designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry. The new Jazz Bakery is scheduled to open in 2019, reports Billboard, and “will house a 266-seat theater, an interactive jazz museum and art gallery plus audio/video broadcast/recording facilities.”

Somehow Maryland beat Minnesota to this one: a Taylor Swift corn maze. Swift approves of the maze, which opens to the public on Sept. 26. She shared a photo of the maze on her Instagram with the caption “lawn goals.” (Billboard)