Avril’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week

 
 

Avril Lavigne has probably had better weeks. By now you’ve probably heard about the 22-year-old’s “Girlfriend” troubles. The punk pop singer is being sued for plagiarism by the ’70s band The Rubinoos.

The group claims Lavigne lifted the chorus from its 1979 song “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” off its Back to the Drawing Board album. The songs share a similar refrain of “Hey, hey. You, you”… “I want to/wanna be your boyfriend/girlfriend.” Let’s take a listen to both, shall we?

Undeniably, the two share the call-response chorus, but the rest of the songs bear no resemblance. Plus, “Hey” and “You” aren’t uncommon lyrics. Just try getting on the Rolling Stones’ cloud and find out. To bolster their claim, the Rubinoos posted two other samples of authorized covers of “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” on their website. The Lush version is particularly interesting because it both pops up and flips the gender of the song.

Avril has responded on her website (ah, online flame wars on personal websites; the 2000s
equivalent of Krystle throwing Alexis into the lily pond). She, of course, adamantly denied any thievery.

“I had never heard this song in my life and their claim is based on 5 words! All songs share similar lyrics and emotions. As humans we speak one language.”

In a continuation of her headaches, last week Avril also got called out by fellow Canuck singer-songwriter Chantal Kreviazuk in an interview with the magazine Performing Songwriter. Chantal worked with Lavigne on her 2003 release “Under My Skin.” They have since parted ways and Chantal publicly scoffed at Lavigne’s songwriting skills, saying, “I mean, Avril, songwriter? Avril doesn’t really sit and write songs by herself
or anything.” Oh, snap.

Chantal went on to grumble that she had sent Avril a song two years ago called “Contagious” and that she saw a track by the same name on Best Damn Thing without her name on it. Chantal has since acknowledged that she had not heard Lavigne’s version and that the songs do not sound alike.

Avril also addressed Chantal’s claims on her website and, interestingly, gave them twice as much ink (fine, virtual ink) as the Rubinoos’ allegations. Funny how people feel more free to talk when litigation isn’t involved :

“Chantal has also made false accusations about my writing skills. I am so over this topic. This letter is not about this. I am not going to sit here and defend my writing skills. I don’t have to prove anything to anyone. I know who I am and what I have done and accomplished and no one can take that away from me.”

“I am so over this topic”? Well, that certainly sounds like a perfect example of Avril’s writing skills.

She goes on to say that Chantal emailed her to apologize and that she has forgiven her. But, if that’s true, why did she threaten to send her own couriers carrying subpoenas Chantal’s way?

“Chantal’s comments are damaging to my reputation and a clear defamation of my character and I am considering taking legal action.”

Is she hoping one lawsuit will cancel out the other? Because I don’t think it works that way. So, what do you think? Is she Avril Lavigne the song burglar or Avril Lavigne the coincidence princess? Discuss.

 
 

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