There is a general trend hitting the music scene and dance floors everywhere now days, that trend is DJ’s remixes of popular songs. It is becoming so big that even music festivals have started booking these DJ’s to play sets in between bands. Remixing Songs and creating new content to brand as your own from other peoples work is the new big thing and it really doesn’t seem to be slowing down.
This culture is opening up the idea that nothing is original. It is spreading and has gone beyond just remixing songs now; Artists like Schmoyoho (A.K.A the Gregory Brothers) have built a Career on YouTube remixing speeches or news telecasts into catchy tunes. One of the more famous ones is “Hide your kids” here are both the original telecast and the remixed versions of it.
Look at what a tune and a bit of Auto-tune on the voice can do to just a simple news telecast. The Gregory Brothers have a talent for creating great music from just a little bit of video and have a vast backlog of videos uploaded to their channel.
This remixing culture is taking over the world. We have seen evidence of this in night clubs, the internet, even Festivals etc. I would find it hard to believe if you told me you hadn’t heard some form of remix in the past year. The music industry is profiting off this culture heavily. However, remix culture isn’t restricted to the music industry. Numerous photos can be claimed to be remixed as well as sound effects and video. But, the question remains; is it all legal? Doesn’t this remixing breach some form of copyright law? Apparently not. There have been cases heard where the original artists have tried to sue the remixing artist for damages on copyright grounds. One case in particular is the Cariou v. Prince case where Cariou tried to claim copyright on his images that Prince (a collagist who used some of Cariou’s images) remixed and sold them for profit. The case was ruled in favour of Prince in the higher courts after he appealed the original decision. You can read more about it here.
In the end remixing is here to stay, whether it is legal or not is another story. The way I see it, I like remixing and it is getting more exposure for the original content to the public. We all know any publicity equals good publicity, however, in the end if the original owner of the material isn’t happy with what the remix is and the re-mixer is profiting they should feel free to sue them for damages.
CrazyLaughAction (2012) Antoine Dodson News Blooper (Original), Accessed on 4/05/2013, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzNhaLUT520
Schmoyoho (2010) iTunes Version- Bed Intruder Song, accessed on 4/05/2013, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VKsVSBhSwJg
Doctorow C. (2013) ‘Fair use decision: remixing is legal even when there is no intent to comment or parody original work’ Boingboing.net, accessed on the 4/05/2013