Judge uses Taylor Swift lyrics in cheeky dismissal of ‘Shake It Off’ lawsuit
In the latest tale of a pop star being accused of stealing music, a copyright infringement lawsuit against Taylor Swift was tossed out in the most spectacular fashion by a Los Angeles judge this week.
U.S. District Court Judge Gail Standish made it known that she most certainly knows her way around Swift’s songbook when she dismissed R&B singer Jesse Braham’s $42-million suit, which alleged Swift’s 2014 Grammy-nominated smash “Shake It Off” was lifted from his tune “Haters Gone Hate.”
Standish then cut deeper, all the while staying in tune in with Swift: “As currently drafted, the Complaint has a blank space — one that requires Braham to do more than write his name,” she wrote in a dismissal order that could merit its own Genius page for annotating its lyrical references. “And, upon consideration of the Court’s explanation ... Braham may discover that mere pleading Band-Aids will not fix the bullet holes in his case. At least for the moment, Defendants have shaken off this lawsuit.”
Last month Braham filed the suit against the singer, alleging her catchy, simplistic chorus — “Cause the players gonna play, play, play, play, play / And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate” — borrows closely from his own “Haters Gone Hate.”
“If I didn’t write the song ‘Haters Gone Hate,’ there wouldn’t be a song called ‘Shake It Off,’” he told the New York Daily News last month.
Before Braham filed suit, he said, he worked tirelessly to rectify his grievances with her team.
First he asked to be named as a writer on the Grammy-nominated track and when that was denied, he then asked if Swift would pose for a selfie because what better way to help your struggling career than having a photo with Swift on social media?
The court decided that the singer hadn’t provided enough factual evidence that Swift had ripped off his song even though he claimed that 92% of Swift’s hit came from his song.
“Cause the players gonna play, play, play, play, play. And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate … And the fakers gonna fake, fake, fake, fake, fake,” Swift sings while Braham’s hook is “Haters gone hate, playas gone play / Watch out for them fakers, they’ll fake you everyday.”
His case boiled down to the phrase “Hates gonna hate, players gonna play.” According to Braham there was “no way” she came up with those lyrics without hearing his song and that Swift was trolling him by releasing the song.
Taylor Swfit has risen from country singer/songwriter to pop princess. Here’s a look at her in concert.(Jun Sato / Getty Images)
Taylor Swift took over the Staples Center before a sold-out crowd, performing hit after hit, with special guests who included L.A. Laker Kobe Bryant and “Orange Is the New Black’s” Uzo Aduba.(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Taylor Swift adds sparkle to the stage as she performs at Louisiana State’s Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, La., on May 22. She’s making the rounds with her 1989 World Tour.(Christopher Polk / Getty Images for TAS)
Taylor Swift lifts her hand in the air at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland, on June 2015.(Ross Gilmore / Getty Images for TAS)
Upon her arrival to Tokyo in May 2015,
At the iHeartRadio Music Awards in March 2015, Taylor Swift made a surprise appearance when she joined Madonna onstage for a performance of “Rebel Heart.” It was quite the collaboration.(Kevin Winter / Getty Images for iHeartMedia)
Taylor Swift joined Kenney Chesney onstage during his Big Revival tour kick-off for a 55-show run. It was at this concert that Swift was spotted in the arms of musician Calvin Harris, sparking rumors the two were dating.(Rick Diamond / Getty Images for Kenny Chesney)
Apparently the 50-year-old has lived unplugged from life considering we’ve been talking about players playing and haters hating for years. 3LW warned us back in 2000 that “them playas gon’ play, [and] them haters gon’ hate” in their hit (titled, you guessed it, “Playas Gon’ Play”).
Braham can file a new complaint — but if he’s smart he’d use these last five seconds of fame by thinking of his next publicity stunt. Because those will never, ever, ever go out of style.
For more music news follow me on Twitter: @gerrickkennedy
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