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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

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46.

The Real WAR    

5 of the original members are alive. Only ONE fronts present day WAR and he is Lonnie Jordon. The REAL WAR is called The Lowrider Band in which 4 original members play in. They are unable to use the WAR for legal reasons.
Listen to this song by The Lowrider Band and you be the judge
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OexYG0OFxZk

barefootboyproductions.com

1425 days ago
47.

whateverpeeps    

I'm shocked that any multimillion company today wouldn't have remembered to get licensing rights to air a song on a commercial. God knows anyone who didn't got their ass sued.

Something sounds fishy here. I think Pepsi probably did have the rights to air the song but War isn't happy or wants more money.

1425 days ago
48.

Lykdysplt    

how come the white guy have the best afro?

1425 days ago
49.

mark    

I changed my mind!

war guys should definitely sue

I just saw the video (of the ad) and the only thing good in it was indeed the song.

idiotic ad , probably made by a bunch of girls too busy texting instead of writing something good. Aggressive like a fist of a pretty girl (who doesn't really mean it .. that kind of action)

War should get what they deserve (money)

1425 days ago
50.

Kyla Brown    

I hate to say this but I have always preffered pepsi over coke. I can not believe the pepsi company did not follow procedure you stole my dads song and you have the money to do whats right so please do so! Things will only get worse from here!

1425 days ago
51.

Jeni    

"Why Can't We Be Friends?" --Truth is stranger than fiction. There are 4 original members of War still alive. They currently tour as Lowrider Band and can't use the "War" name.. .People only figure out they are listening to the original band when they hear them start playing..these guys still rock!..Hope they get part of whatever financial recovery is made.

1425 days ago
52.

used2liveINXS    

Character Witness:

Back in the early 70s, my brother (then 12 or 13), was in Shriner’s Hospital for Crippled Children. Yeah, they used that word back then… Following a particularly complicated surgery to repair his most damaged knee, he developed an infection; spending weeks in isolation. The poor kid was depressed and feeling hopeless. This is a kid who loved playing sports and who knew, he could never run again.
Enter Lee Oskar, harp player for War. War was my brother’s favorite band back then, and Lee’s visit to the hospital alone would have been great. But, Lee ended up spending a long afternoon, much of it with my brother and a few other boys (also fans). Not just a drop in, sign stuff and bail, which is what generally happens.
From that point on, my brother’s hope and strength increased. He couldn’t stop talking about Lee and how cool he was. When my brother came home, he picked up the harmonica and soon afterwards, the guitar. While my other brother and I have had careers in music, this brother didn’t go that way. Still, he IS without question, the REAL talent in the family. He was playing circles around me about 2 months after picking up the guitar. I opted to write that off to my being a girl and having small hands.
The point is, he loves playing. It still makes him happy and it all started with Lee Oskar. More importantly, he was able to channel his love for sports into his music and Lee inspired that.
So GO WAR! Get the big bucks from Pepsi! You deserve it and more! Freakin’ corporations anyway. What, they get to slide on the rules? We’re behind you all the way! Bands with a conscious… remember that? It wasn’t always just Bono…

But BTW, "Truth" is right. It happens all the time.

1425 days ago
53.

Jeni    

to 54 - Touching story re Lee Oskar. He is no longer with War, but now with Lowrider Band.

1425 days ago
54.

Nicole    

this band is just looking for a handout cause they're hard up for cash , pepsi will win in the end

1424 days ago
55.

cari    

Not if the song is 20-25 years old. Remember the law?? It still exists.

1424 days ago
56.

JoAnna    

Doesn't anybody remember how Donald Trump used the song "For the Love of Money" without getting permission and lost lawsuit by the O'Jays? They want the song, so they use it. They don't mind getting sued, cause they already made a ton of money!

1424 days ago
57.

Michael Kinsman    

If you really want to the know the dynamics between War & the Lowerider Band, you'll find them from my blog Froggerdogger.com.

http://www.froggerdogger.com/?p=424

1415 days ago
58.

Lawrence Currie    

All the tactics used in this case are exactly the way the deal with all their lawsuits mine included. Not returning calls , Blame the ad agency,the ad agency will blame Pepsi. Pepsi will fire the ad agency and all those involved.Delay ,lie,appeal even loose your lawyers papers and address. Maybe even blame a secretary for not answering the phone. This company are admitted theives and you are the current mark an x CEO Stated publicly "One should be flattered when someone steals you ideas". Well we are not flattered.http://crystalpepsi.blogspot.com/

1336 days ago
59.

WARQUEEN    

The REAL OG's of WAR, now the LOWRIDER BAND, should do a Coke commercial, because it's the REAL THING and so are they.

1336 days ago
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