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Hell Hath No Fury Like Devil in a Blue Dress

8/25/2008 8:06 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Our favorite lawsuit of the day: A member of Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels -- famous for Devil with a Blue Dress On -- is suing Rhino Entertainment for allegedly screwing the band out of royalties.
Mitch Ryder: Click to view the docs!
The royalty part is your basic snooze. But we haven't heard from Mitch Ryder and the boys for decades. James McCarty, Jr. a guitar player for the band, filed the suit in L.A. County Superior Court on behalf of the entire band. Unclear why the others aren't named.

Here's our conundrum. The lawsuit claims the band is known for the 1966 hits Devil with a Blue Dress On AND Good Golly, Miss Molly. We thought Good Golly, Miss Molly was part of Devil with a Blue Dress On and even have the recording to prove it. In fact, it was released as one track, according to Amazon.com. and Wikipedia.

So why does McCarty's suit claim the two songs are separate and distinct? It's a devil of a question.

14 COMMENTS

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1.

elaine    

"Good Golly Miss Molly" is a song unto itself...it was a huge hit for Little Richard back in the day. It waas written by Bumps Blackwell.....there are several versions of the song...long before it was combined with "Devil With the Blue Dress".

2166 days ago
2.

Chuck D    

It's called a medley..two different songs sequed..
Chuck D.

2166 days ago
3.

Boudica    

you saw the lawsuit, we didn't. All I can assume is that the company is selling the rights to Good Golly Miss Molly as a separate piece of music, as well as selling the combo version. The band likely does not want to omit any sales that include Miss Molly from the lawsuit (compensation). And let's face it folks. Back in the day, the bands did not make as much as they do now. The record companies only have to print these oldies albums, not pay to record them. Let's all play fair and pay what we owe!

2166 days ago
4.

Twinker    

Thanks for the reminder...I almost forgot the Democratic convention starts tonite..

2166 days ago
5.

buddha1    

As Elaine above states---The King (Richard Penniman) better known as Little Richard, the TRUE King of Rock
and Roll sang Good Golly Miss Molly first!! You Tube has some versions of it!! Enjoy!!

2166 days ago
6.

SillyPutty    

The label to the orginal 45 listed it as Devil With A Blue Dress On And Good Golly Miss Molly. Just the way it was titled back then.

2166 days ago
7.

michaela    

Doesn't surprise me one bit with all the stuff that I know about W. Levise. To this day he's not known for paying royalties to any of his band members. He's been on a German label since '78 and has had quite a bit of success in Europe since then. He promised all of his guys to 'please stick with me and I'll take care of you'. When he then actually had a lot of success in Germany he forgot all about those words.......

2166 days ago
8.

Joanne    

I hope Mitch Ryder wins this!! I was a teen back when "Devil With the Blue Dress" was a hit!!

2166 days ago
9.

Sam    

This is a lawsuit over Artist Royalties, the money paid to Recording Artists for the use of sound recordings made for record company. It has nothing to do with whether or not a sound recording is a single song or a medley.

In the music business the sale of a sound recording simultaneously generates two different royalties streams.
The first, the Artist Royalty, goes to the singer or band that made the sound recording for the use of their recorded performace no matter who composed the song, or songs, they recorded.
The second, the Mechanical Royalty, goes to the person or people who composed the song or songs being performed no matter who performs it.

For the sound recording by Mitch Ryder And The Detroit Wheels of "Devil With The Blue Dress/Good Golly Miss Molly" the royalties earned from its sale would be divided as follows:
[1] The Artist Royalty would go to the Recording Artist, in this example Mitch Ryder And The Detroit Wheels. This is what Mr McCarty has filed suit over.
[2] Individual Mechanical Royalies would go to Frederick LOng and William Stevenson, the composers of the song "Devil With A Blue Dress" which is the first part of the medley, as well as to Robert Blackwell and John Marasscalco, the composers of "Good Golly Miss Molly" which is the second part of the medley.

According to this filing, Mr McCarty believes Rhino Records is currently, and was at the time of the alledged breech, "part of the even larger Time Warner media conglomerate".
This is incorrect.
Time Warner sold Warner Music Group, which include Rhino Records, to a private investor group in 2003.

2166 days ago
10.

hang him high    

Geez TMZ....fight the good fight for once! As Chuck, #1 and #10 states its a medley, and regardless - give the boys their due! We grew up enjoying those sounds. Didn't you??

2166 days ago
11.

Tim    

It is a medley.

2166 days ago
12.

bettie    

you guys kill me, i can see you don't check your facts on ANY story you're doing; "Devil with a Blue Dress" is INDEED it's own song, recorded originally by Little Richard (although, if this song follows along the same lines as alot of the R & R songs of the 50's, the song may even be older than that).

guess "just the facts, jack" doesn't apply to TMZ......facts are just an afterthought to you clowns.

2166 days ago
13.

northern gypsy    

#7 (sam)...sounds like your in the biz...thxs for giving us the legal facts...hey harvey...are you not a lawyer ?..why didn't you know this ?..

2166 days ago
14.

Sigmund Frodo    

Hey, Jim McCarty still rocks his ass off here, near the Motor City! His rockin' blues is an awesome thing to behold!

2165 days ago

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