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John Legend Accused of SONG JACKING

7/7/2011 4:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

John Legend is a no good song-stealer ... at least according to some unknown singer, who claims Legend listened to his demo tape and then ripped off his hard work for profit.
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According to the lawsuit, filed earlier this week in New Jersey, songwriter Anthony Stokes passed his demo off to Legend back in 2004 ... after Stokes watched him perform at UNC.

Stokes claims Legend promised to listen to the song, but never heard back from him. Fast forward to 2006 ... Legend released a track called "Maxine's Interlude" -- and according to Stokes, it's a dead ringer for his track "Where Are You Now?"

Stokes wants to block Legend from selling the alleged rip-off -- and demands unspecified damages.

It's hard to hear the similarities if you listen to each song separately -- so we mashed them up ... the lyrics echo each other, and the key matches up nearly perfectly.

So we gotta ask ...

67 COMMENTS

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46.

Prinx    

WHY......?I'm most dissapionted....How John Legend do this?he's so gifted why can't he just sit down and write his own Version?

1015 days ago
47.

debbiedoesnothing    

Not only is it a rip off, the other guy did it better. I'd buy his record.

1015 days ago
48.

musiciskey    

Its not a matter of john legend STEALING the song......because of so much music out there.....some is bound to be similar....and that is the way it is....whoever did it first wins the battle.....doesn't matter if you have never heard the artist. Out of all the artists in the world you will clash, and the person who registers first wins.

1015 days ago
49.

Jennifer    

These two songs sound absoluteky NOTHING along. They don't even sound like they are in the same genre. And yeah, the other guy sounds better. lol.

1015 days ago
50.

buck    

The second sound so much better than JL. SHAME ON JL! JL cannot sing, period. Someone give Mr. Stokes a recording contract, what a voice.

1015 days ago
51.

TheHOLETruth    

Firstly, the John Legend sample sounded like an intro, so it's difficult to make a comparison. Secondly, the lyrics sounds like a love song that a middle school boy would write

1015 days ago
52.

williejaxx    

I doubt John Legend ever even listened to this guy's demo....u really think artists have that kind of time.

Not to mention that the two songs sound absolutely nothing alike except for both having the words "where are you now"

1015 days ago
53.

Anonymous527496    

We all like the other guy's song better. He (Legend) probably saw this new guy as a threat and took his words and melody for himself. But this new guy has an amazing voice.

1015 days ago
54.

Arawyn Walays    

Yes! And, The Chicago "Sound" of the horns is a rip-off, too.

1014 days ago
55.

One    

This is ridiculous. Seriously.
John Legend has a great, powerful voice.

This song is like 10 seconds. Lets stop hatin'

1014 days ago
56.

Russ N Cali    

Is that the way John Legion get all his ****ty ass songs,by stealing them?He should give all those ****ty songs back.

1014 days ago
57.

bluesky    

Didn't hear anything "obviously" infringing, hard to believe a jury would decide in favor of plantiff. I'm sure the parties will settle.

In contrast, the similiarity of Classic IV's "Stormy" to Legend's "Save Room" is unmistakable.

Legend's version is produced well, I rather like it. One thing Legend capitalizes on is a certain style, as much production as his voice. Textbook 70's pop/production.

He aspires to be a "legendary" singer-songwriter, with a unique voice, instead he's just that guy that just sounds like all the great artists from the 70's - Smokey Robinson, Curtis Mayfield, Burt Bacharach, Marvin Gaye...

To his credit, Legend is one well-packaged, dead-sexy dude.

1013 days ago
58.

Ela    

Try playing them at the same time. the two songs fit together perfectly.

1012 days ago
59.

Philip Lippman    

So a couple of words say the same thing. I think I will write a song called I love you, and sue everyone who sings I or love or you. I want to be famous too, but I wouldnt be stupid enough or arrogant enough to think my song was so unique that it was ripped off when it wasnt. If a song ever is than that is a different story, but this one is not.

987 days ago
60.

titus boyce    

Goot night let say this sue him for everything

987 days ago
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