TMZ

Our TV Shows

Got a Tip?

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

'Timber'

Harmonica Player Claims

'Timber' Ripped My Riff

6/26/2014 12:20 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

SF Bay LaunchTimber Launch

Pitbull and Kesha may have unknowingly dabbled in stolen goods when they recorded "Timber"  ... so says a songwriter who claims the song is a rip-off of one of his tunes.

Lee Oskar -- a self-proclaimed world-famous harmonicist -- says his 1978 song "San Francisco Bay" features a catchy harmonica riff ... the same riff you hear in "Timber" -- but in a faster tempo.

Oskar says it's no coincidence either.  He claims in court docs the harmonica player on "Timber" was instructed to mimic Oskar's performance on "SF Bay."


"Timber" went on to became a huge hit in the U.S. and Europe. Now Oskar's suing the record company for at least $3 mil.  He's not going after Pitbull or Kesha.

So we gotta ask ...

50 COMMENTS

No Avatar
1.

KevinJG    

The original was so much better!! Added it to playlist

97 days ago
2.

LittleJerrySeinfeld    

The original was so much ****ing better than that annoying ass remake by Kesha and the bald guy. It's pretty sad when you have to jack an original and not even give the guy credit.

97 days ago
3.

Bridget    

"Lee Oskar -- a self-proclaimed world-famous harmonicist -"

You neglected to mention he is in the group "War". It took me two seconds to look up his name and get a bunch of stuff back. You can buy his harmonicas at Guitar Center for crying out loud. As far as harmonicists go, I'd say he is pretty fricken famous.

Sounds the same to me.

97 days ago
4.

kewljewl    

Just a question...how is there 250 votes in the first 15 minutes this was posted...just after midnight...really?

97 days ago
5.

kewljewl    

OK I'll ask again..how is there 292 votes within 20 mins. And I didn't even check one. Just hit vote...how is that???

97 days ago
6.

Liver80s    

The pictured used for Lee Oskar is incorrect. That's Stanley Behrens, the present harmonica player for War.

97 days ago
7.

Raylua415    

When I first heard "Timber" and Ma$e's "All I Ever Wanted", I knew they imitating "San Francisco Bay". No question about it! Pay the man!

97 days ago
8.

Glenn    

Usually it's a stretch to hear any similarities with these but I think in this case, he's screwed.

97 days ago
9.

VOUDOU    

Cough up some of that NBA Finals licensing cheddar that filled the pockets. These are usually a stretch but that harmonica player is getting his biggest check to date, soon.

97 days ago
10.

NGAPLZ    

Timbaland-level obvious.

97 days ago
11.

chucklehead    

TMZ I understand your staff is barely out of diapers; but give due diligence! Lee Oscar, played with the incredible band WAR. Just google some one.

97 days ago
12.

seign    

Normally I find these things ridiculous but that WAS a blatant rip-off. It's so obvious too. Hopefully the original will get all the money that is due to him.

97 days ago
13.

Passion Of The Taint    

Both are stinky baby diaper garbage songs!
Kesha smells like poop most of the time!!!

97 days ago
14.

HALJ    

They paid them already....they are on the credits....they got credit from license holders but not the songwriters. So songwriters are suing. Not expert in who owns rights in these situations, but the songwriters may have sold rights to one of the big guys like BMI or other companies that collect on license rights. The song is not hiding it was a copy, that is what they were going for.

97 days ago
15.

Tda    

Lee Oskar is not "self proclaimed" famous. He is famous and has his own line of harmonicas. He did the famous "Low Rider" riff.

97 days ago
| 1 | 2 | 3 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments

Around The Web