Monday, 8 June 2009

Which came first: the Bangalter or the Prydz?

Here's what I wrote on my own blog awhile back.

For many years, people have argued over (though not the way abortion and such issues are) which version of Call On Me came first. Call On Me is a famous club anthem that samples Valerie by Steve Winwood. The argument in favor of Together or Thomas Bangalter as the original creator goes like this: THomas created the track to be one of his secret DJing weapons, never intending to release it (as with Gymtonic ) Eric Prydz heard it at some point or another, and decided to cash in on this idea and made his own version. Or perhaps, Thomas couldn't get the Winwood sample cleared, and Prydz could. The argument in favor of Prydz is that Together just made their own white label remix for playing in their sets.
I've done a bit more research, and I think I know exactly what happened.

The other day, Joe asked me if Power Glove Records was going to sell its music. I decided to check on what it takes to clear a sample, and discovered it'd be impossible to do that for a couple teenagers. I also discovered the process of clearance. First off, you have to make a deal with all the songwriters. That means if I were to sample a Boney M song which has 6 writers credited, I'd have to work out some deal that they'd all be happy with. Usually that's not hard. The second part is the toughie: clearing it with the record label that own the copyright to the recording. The only way around this is to get the sample re-recorded with the band itslef, or one of many services that will do this for you. That right there is the important part. See, Steve Winwood re-recorded the vocal for Eric Prydz. If you listen to the Thomas/Together version, you can hear the original instrumentation in the sample. In Eric Prydz' version, the chords are the same, but they're palyed by synths instead. No original instrumentation.

That, ladies and gentelmen, is why the Together/Bangalter version was never cleared: the record label either wouldn't work out a deal, or wanted too much. Prydz... you douche...

Having read all the sampling laws... it makes me wanna be a paralegal even more.

Together - Call On Me
[Right Click To Download]








15 comments:

Bastille said...

wow, that was really interesting, thanks for that. All that legal stuff is really interesting

Bastille said...

if the singer/songwriter is dead, i'm guessing all that's needed is the record company's approval right?

Also why wouldn't the record company just let them sample the song? Why go through all that trouble of getting the singer to sing again and all that?

Boba Fettuccini said...

It costs thousands of dollars to secure the rights from the record label. If Steve WInwood himself can just re-record two lines of vocals... much easier.

Incidnetally, if the writers are dead, you have to go through whoever owns the copyright on it after their death. If you don't know who that is, you can contact ASCAP or another similar organization and they find out for you.

Gavin said...

if the artist is dead though there is a certain amount of time that the record label can hold all tat stuff legally.that is 70 years. after that,anyione can use it with out permission.

Boba Fettuccini said...

Unless they renew the copyright. If they don't renew it after 70 years, then it becomes public domain.

Louis La Roche said...

This is wrong actually. The version that thomas played was an early demo by prydz. The version that is labelled as thomas' is a set rip of him playing it with dj falcon with a phoenix vocal loop over the top.

When prydz wanted to release it he sent steve winwood the demo and he liked it so much that he re-recorded the vocals for prydz for the proper version.

prez jordan said...

Please tell me that's actually Louis and he actually just slammed you.

Except Louis has a blogger account so he'd probably use that...

Ed Banger Kids said...

sounds legit to me. both sides are pulling me.

Louis La Roche said...

Yes that was me and yes it is true haha

Boba Fettuccini said...

You're sure? Damn. I was hoping I actually figured something out. :(

Ed Banger Kids said...

I think you're missing the big picture here Boba.

Louis La Roche took the time out of his day to correct your already awesome theory. LOUIS LA ROCHE. THE MAN IN QUESTION

WOOOW. Thats freakin BADASS.

Boba Fettuccini said...

Now we just need to get Prydz and Bangalter in here.

Boba Fettuccini said...

Maybe I should just commit Seppuku now.

prophetfp said...

Really interesting post!

I knew only that Roulè didn't find a way to clear the sampling rights while the (obviously more powerful) Ministry Of Sound managed to do that workaround.

Prydz was only supposed to remix that, but since the original version never came out they re-recorded the vocals and voilà, smash hit.

Louis La Roché, you're the french touch hero.
Keep going man, i'm spreading you to Milan's scene ;)

prez jordan said...

I don't think Boba was wrong, I just don't think he covered the whole story. Everything he said was basically factually correct.

Technically, Boba was saying how Thomas first mixed it, which is true. He just didn't acquire the samples himself. Prydz sent Thomas his early mix which, since unreleased, technically came after Thomas's mix.

My two cents.