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
91.

chameleon1218    

Yep - she totally stole it....

2644 days ago
92.

j    

TOTAL RIP, THAT MY VERDICT.

2644 days ago
93.

Dev    

total rip-off! shame on avril--pathetic!

2644 days ago
94.

gwen    

I knew I had heard that song before when I first heard it. I then thought it must be a remake.
I listened to both and without a doubt it is the same song. Sorry Avril, I am Canadian but you didn't just make up that song..you stole it.

2644 days ago
95.

Diana    

Sounds like the same song to me..... so cough up the money.

2644 days ago
96.

VicsterM    

Avril is an obnoxcious girl and both the songs in my opinion suck. Yes, it sounds very familiar. Before she releases a song, she should check more thoroughly.

2644 days ago
97.

Hey    

Well, the songs are similar. but once you debut your song/album, people WILL listen to it (gasp believe it or not) and if they like it or think it's catchy or something, they might imitate it. But personally, i think the songs are similar, but not sooo much that you'd wanna sue someone for it. The only main similarities so far from the clip are the words "hey" "you" "(girl/boy)friend." even though "Boyfriend" is from the 70's, we still use the words and vocabulary hasn't changed that much in the past 30 years (relating to greetings, "you" and relationships).

2644 days ago
98.

mickey    

what would brian boitano do.................

2644 days ago
99.

wandabo    

TOTAL RIP OFF!!!!!!!!!

2644 days ago
100.

Shaniqua    

Guys honestly....i am not a fan of lavigne but they SOUNDED nothing alike, and if you are referring to the lyrics and are going to get bent out of shape why don't you logically realize that 'hey you' is a very common phrase in the english language, and the chords and keys are totally different. believe me, i have never really liked her, but come on!

oh and by the way i have been in music all my life and am getting really far with my talents and if that isn't enough crediblility, than you shouldn't be posting on music related topics. simple as that.

have a nice day!

2644 days ago
101.

susieq    

How is this any different than the constant sampling we hear on the radio every day? I don't really think they are so similar that the suit would hold up in court. Theft? Kind of a dramatic label ...

2644 days ago
102.

SpottyBoy Music    

Ya it's a match, cough up them royalties!

2644 days ago
103.

Maruichan    

Oh my God. They are the exact same

2644 days ago
104.

Cynic    

OMG, the Rubinoos???? That is SO funny! I was touring Europe as a teenager in 1978 and met The Rubinoos at a Burger King in London! The British paper "Record Mirror" was doing an article and photos about them, and my friend and I had our picture taken with them, which then appeared in a later issue of the "Mirror". They sent me a copy of the newspaper and one of their albums in the mail after I returned stateside. I hadn't thought about them in years! Oh well, thanks for the memories, Avril, because their music wasn't anything to write home about!

2644 days ago
105.

Sister Spicoli    

Come on people......... I've never heard that boyfriend song before and I'm almost 35.......... I highly doubt Avril has ever heard it either. Just a coinkydink!

2644 days ago
Previous 15 Comments | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments

Around The Web