TMZ

Our TV Shows

Got a Tip?

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

War Goes Nuclear on Pepsi -- You Stole Our Song!

9/1/2010 7:19 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

The guys from War claim Pepsi stole their "signature song" for a national ad campaign ... and now the band is opening a $10 million can of whoop ass to make things right.

0901_war_pepsi_EX

Ironically, it's all over the song "Why Can't We Be Friends?" -- which, according to a lawsuit filed in L.A. County Superior Court, is currently being used in an ad campaign for Pepsi Max.

According to War, the band "did not consent to the use of their performance" in the spot -- and claim the commercial is a "deliberate violation" of their licensing arrangements.

War ain't cheap -- the band wants more than $10 million in damages.

Calls to Pepsi have not been returned.

59 COMMENTS

No Avatar
16.

Big Mamma Cornbread    

All is fair in business and WAR.......HERE HERE!!!!

1422 days ago
17.

jc    

I first had a pet peeve with this commercial when I noticed that the editing s**ks. Coke guy starts to drink with his right hand, yet when Pepsi guy records it's in his left hand. Then when he sets the can down it's back in his right hand. Yeah, I have to much time on my hands!

1422 days ago
18.

CGS    

Get Em' - Pepsi sucks anyway! Artists need to be paid!

1422 days ago
19.

Janet    

10 million is pocket change for Pepsi. Pay up.

1422 days ago
20.

lalaland    

LOVE War! Used to go see them all the time up in the Bay. I'd like to think that they would know if the record label has exclusive rights and don't need their permission (Ala John Fogerty/Saul Zantz). But, War was pretty young and stoned back then, they could have signed it away. But, then, I think they'd know that by now.

1422 days ago
21.

CCC    

There are only a couple of members of the band WAR still playing and touring. This is not like some rapper dupping music from other artists and putting it on their album. This is blatantly taking someones song and using it for profit. Pepsi needs to pay up big time. By the way, I had a pepsi today for the first time in years. Pepsi sucks. Team Coke.

1422 days ago
22.

the truth    

how does a company that size...that spends that kind of money to a ad agency...make that big of mistake..sue for more $40,000,000

1422 days ago
23.

Dane    

Something tells me the Pepsi lawyers might be just a little more in tune with the legalities regarding use of the song. Why the hell is everyone reading a few sentences here on TMZ and suddenly believing Pepsi committed a crime?!?!?! Get real people. Let's get all the facts from somewhere besides an entertainment website before jumping to conclusions.

1422 days ago
24.

mousetrap    

Um, think people. Do you really think a company like Pepsi with their legal team just threw this famous song on a commercial without first analyzing the copyright or licensing agreement? I seriously doubt it. Not all of these old acts have the rights to their songs anymore. As a matter of fact, many of them don't. They are probably just blowing smoke in hopes they will get something from Pepsi anyway.

1422 days ago
25.

thelil    

I believe that War is claiming that Pepsi licensed the song "Why Can't We Be Friends"), but not the rights to use WAR's recording ("performance") of it. The commercial in question seems to use War's own recording.

1422 days ago
26.

Wiz    

Here's the commercial:

-or-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EX0fmBHiZy4

1422 days ago
27.

namers    

13. Slipping into Darkness is an amazing song. Don't forget Eric Burden and War with Spill the Wine.


27. You're an idiot.

1422 days ago
28.

Stacie    

OMG - I work for Pepsi and I'm low woman on the todem pole..thanks everyone. I now see how people view possible layoffs. From the outcome of lawsuits the people that work for these companies, get laid off or get no money for years. People should be more thoughtful. $10 million is ridiculous....have them to stop using the song but please think of the little people that work there.

1422 days ago
29.

TheTruth    

is there more than one original member of WAR still alive? no current member who were not part of WAR should collect one red cent..you think WAR has lawyers like Pepsi does? Pepsi will run the ragged until they're broke and the rest die off before they cough up one penny...just how it works...WAR would be better served doing what they used to do best, making good music---whats it been 45 years since they're last hit? Get real.
________________________________________

You don't have a clue about what your saying...you dumb @ss.

1422 days ago
30.

Hench    

I'm guessing whoever has the rights to the song - sold out and War has not received any cut..Do you think the Attorney's for Pepsi are that stupid..really..they get paid to avoid this type of publicity.

1422 days ago
Previous 15 Comments | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments

Around The Web