Black Keys Sue Similar Songwriters

After settling with Pizza Hut and other advertisers for using their songs last year, the band are now targeting "soundalike" songs which intentionally sound like them on other adverts.

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After settling a lawsuit against advertisers who used their songs without permission last year, the Black Keys are now targeting ad songs that merely sound similar to their own.

To explain, here's how music works in advertising. A company could buy the rights to a song by a major artist like the Black Keys, but it's expensive.

If they want the Black Keys sound and style for less money, a company can go to a production house who can record something similar but with a different composition to avoid lawsuits. That is, until now.

Billboard reports that the band are taking Pinnacle Entertainment and Manhattan Production Music to court for using "substantially similar" music in their adverts for a chain of casinos.

It is alleged that a representative for the casino had casually mentioned that the apparently similar song was "a licensed track inspired by 'Howlin' for You' by The Black Keys." It seems like the band picked up on this admission, and a similar comment on the casino's Twitter feed.

Meanwhile, drummer Patrick Carney says musicians should never feel entitled to anything.

"We've definitely worked hard, but a lot of bands have worked just as hard. You just have to feel really lucky. Never feel like youre entitled to it because then you just sort of turn into a prick," he told 93XRT.

Hear "Howlin' For You" by the Black Keys here:

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    TTP Penguin
    Let's hope AC/DC don't get wind of this, otherwise Airbourne are screwed!
    I was about to say the same, damn you sir! damn you to hell! xD
    I was about to type the exact same sentence you just wrote. and it's very unnecessary for me to say this. Damn!
    "Never feel like youre entitled to it" Surely a feeling of entitlement is the basis of any lawsuit?
    I can't stand their antics but I really do dig their tunes. It's also cool that Dan brought back Dr John. But suing Pizza hut, randomass TV commercials and talking bad about just about any band they can think of gets on my nerves. To a certain extent i think it's okay to speak your mind about other musicians, but not to the extreme they seem to take it.
    The ironic thing is that the Black Keyes have allowed more bands to use their music in ads than any other band in the world.
    i don't think that's about the lawsuit. i think he's talking more about their success
    "Meanwhile, drummer Patrick Carney says musicians should never feel entitled to anything ." I know that's just me quoting UG, thus making my point invalid. But Whatever...
    Everything these hipster pieces of slime say it pretty much moronic.
    I agree. To me, they come off as somewhat egotistical (and as immature as this sounds) I'm already getting sick of them since they're already over played on the radio. Also, I hate hipsters.
    Hypocritical, considering they steal their sound from every delta blues band from the 80s, as well as hendrix's bluesy tracks
    And they don't even do it very well. Black Keyes suck big donkey balls. And they like it.
    I never really listened to the black keys before, and now I've got a reason not to listen to them! douchebags!
    what is next? They sue other bands for using and A chord with the delay set to the same millisecond? "Hey that is the way WE used the A chord, you can't do that"
    "Never feel like youre entitled to it because then you just sort of turn into a prick" Then a prick you have become.
    All the Black Keys do is rip off old blues music. They are a poor-man's White Stripes. I don't see how they can sue an ad company for making generic ad music that sounds like them. I never liked this band and now I like them even less.
    I agree with you on this one. They haven't done anything groundbreaking whatsoever. I mean, the fact that the 70's rock scene had a bunch of rock and roll artists that had similar sounds proves that it's just a part of the times. Bands influence each other and start to sound a bit like each other. It's not the time to sue other bands, it's a time to just write more material that is unique and special. For the Black Keys, it might be a tad hard for them though since, you know, what you said...
    This is all true, but you have to remember that this case is based around people ripping off a specific song . It's not really the same as fitting into a pre-existing genre. I definately agree that this band aren't as original as alot of people seem to assume though!
    I disagree with you on the "groundbreaking" issue. they are fairly mainstream getting in some top charts in some countries. how long ago was the last blues guitarist who did that? they didnt invent blues, but I guess they brought it back to the public again. Thats sort of groundbreaking in this day and age. Which makes me think the same thing could be done with rock. On all other points I agree with you though.
    How is getting your music into the charts groundbreaking, that's what you're supposed to do
    I could not agree with you more, dear God. I don't have a huge problem with their music, even if it is just a rip off of old blues in a sense, and completely a poor man's White Stripes, but these guys are two of if the biggest dickhead's in music. They really aren't the fantastic musicians they think they are.
    Savage Animal
    White Stripes are a poor imitation of blues rock, the Black Keys are the real thing. listen to their first two albums if you don't believe me
    What a joke! White dudes playing bad blues that have all been done to death a thousand times over!?!? Suing people over ripping off their ripoffs!?!?!? Saw them at Lolla and they were terrible. Saw them with the Stones and their sound was piss poor and their signal static-y... not to mention the drummer is the stiffest "pro" I've ever seen. It's a testament to the terrible state of rock music that these guys are in the mainstream. In the 90's and before, they'd be a one-off specialty blues act. Honestly, I'd rather listen to Blues Traveler for this type of white boy blues.
    The Demigod
    I figured getting married would chill this guy out. Guess he's just a natural douche.
    Reminds me a lot of this situation: Basically, a tune which sounded incredibly similar to The John Butler Trio's song Zebra was used in an ad for Oikos Greek Yoghurt, aired during the Superbowl last year. Last story short, there was a monetary settlement to JB.
    I guess they have figured out that writing mediocre songs will only take them so far.
    I personally cant stand this band at all. I think the music blows and they in general are pricks. You havent done shit and you're talking shit about other bands and suing everyone you can think of. Guess they realize that they are not going to be around forever and they need to cash in any way possible. I hope thier bus crashes