TMZ

Our TV Shows

Got a Tip?

Call TMZ at (888) 847-9869 or Click Here

Avril Ripped for Allegedly Ripping Off "Girlfriend"

7/6/2007 4:06 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Avril Lavigne has gotten herself into a deeply complicated mess, with two '70s songwriters claiming that she stole their song for her hit single "Girlfriend."
Click to hear!
In a lawsuit filed in US District Court in Northern California, songwriters Tommy Dunbar and James Gangwer allege that "Girlfriend" rips off their 1979 song, "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend," originally performed by The Rubinoos, whose previous claim to fame was penning the theme to "Revenge of the Nerds." Veteran music critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine wrote on Billboard.com that "Girlfriend" was "a total lift" from "Boyfriend."
Click to hear!
Lavigne's manager tells the AP that the claim is baseless and that he hired a musicologist to study the two tracks -- and that they've been deemed "completely different songs." Decide for yourself below ...

UPDATE: Tommy Dunbar and James Gangwer, the songwriters who recently brought a legal action against Avril Lavigne and Dr. Luke that claimed that the hit Lavigne/Dr. Luke song "Girlfriend" infringed the copyright in their 1979 song "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend," have issued the following statement: "We are satisfied that any similarities between the two songs resulted from Avril and Luke's use of certain common and widely used lyrics. We therefore completely exonerate Avril and Luke from any wrongdoing of any kind in connection with the claims made by us in our lawsuit."

229 COMMENTS

No Avatar
16.

Kevin    

I'm so embarassed that I know this but "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" was also done by the Mickey Mouse Club spin-off band from the 80s and early-90s called the Party. Sometimes I'm proud of my music knowledge, other times I'm not. Anyways, could there be an additional unknown copyright infringement?? Did Avril mean to rip off the heinous 80s cover of this terrible song?

2632 days ago
17.

Alena    

apparently this isn't the first time that she takes their songs and runs away with the money.

2632 days ago
18.

goddessangelina    

They sound NOTHING alike...melody-wise...
the lyrics totally..can you copywrite a sentence?!?

2632 days ago
19.

maxii    

the nasty snaggle tooth spitting bitch stole the damn song i heard both of them and she ripped the song now i hope she will openly talk about that when she is busy talking about other singers

2632 days ago
20.

goatse    

not a fan of Avril but they are 2 different songs you can't copyright a singers "phrasing" the lyrics are generic so it's not a ripoff. Avril should be sued for not having any talent

2632 days ago
21.

FLORIDA CROTCH    

I HEARD THE TRAKS ON THE TELE...THEY SOUND ALIKE....I LIKE BOTH...I DON'T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT AVRIL...BUT THIS IS THE FIRST SONG THAT I HAVE NOTICED FROM HER.....I LIKE THE VIDEO TOO...ITS FUNNY....ISN'T SHE INTO PUNK TYPE MUSIC??...THE ORIGINAL TRAK IS SORTA OLD SKOOL PUNKY RITE????.....THE BAND IS THE "RAMONES"....I MEAN..."RUBINOOS"......NAME SOUNDS PUNKY......THERE WERE PROBABLY TIME CONSTRAINTS AND THEY WENT AHEAD ANYWAY....THEY KNEW THIS SONG WOULD BE GREAT AND THEY KNEW THAT THE ORIGINAL DUDES MITE BE UPSET AND WANT THE GREEN....SO ITS ALL GOOD....I AM GUESSING AVRILS RECORD COMPANY IS SET TO GO NOW WITH THE CASH TO PAY UP????.......PLUS IT GIVES THE "RUBINOOS" AIR TIME RITE????...NOW I WILL GO GOOGLE THEM....

2632 days ago
22.

Ibe    

Sound similar...but not the same. I like the craziness in both song!

2632 days ago
23.

Nuts    

yep their the same.someone is going to get big unexpected windfall here because for some unknown reason the song was a hit.go figure.

2632 days ago
24.

ugh    

#13 - LOL - you are so right! How can she honestly say she didn't steal that song? It' exactly the same. Duh

2632 days ago
25.

Playne Jayne    

Not only is it sad she is a complete "punk" poser... but she doesn't even steal good material. THe songs suck either way and perhaps this lawsuit of MAJOR plagerism will hit her pocket book and force her to come up with her own legit material to make all the teeney boppers happy... if not I hear BRittany Spears former writers are looking for work...

If Vanilla Ice can lose to Queen and DAvid Bowie for a ting... she has no chance in hell winning this one.

2632 days ago
26.

Adrienna    

I'm no musicologist....but..umm...those sound alot alike. Did they think no one would notice..ha

2632 days ago
27.

Narko Nerko    

I must admit, BOTH songs suck turds outta dead ducks.

Sucks like my grandma on a 40 mile mountain trek without her shoes on in the snow.

2632 days ago
28.

Meg    

She is such a FAKE. I'm really not surprised that she would go to such desperate attempts to make "music". If someone runs around screaming that everyone is a poser and they're not... well they probably are!

2632 days ago
29.

Danielle    

Sounds the same to me. I can't stand Avril. Shes such a bi$%h!!!! I don't like you girlfriend!!!

2632 days ago
30.

SwordsWoman    

Hey Avril,
You're screwed, Honey...Better write your own songs next time, eh?!?!?!?

2632 days ago
Previous 15 Comments | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments

Around The Web