Marvin Gaye's kids talk Pharell's 'Happy' similarities to 'Ain't That Peculiar'
Marvin Gaye’s family has just come off a win in the fight against Robin Thicke and Pharell Williams’ song “Blurred Lines.” They were awarded $7 million because of the similarities between “Blurred Lines” and Gaye’s hit “Got to Give It Up.”
But when asked about similarities others have pointed out between Pharell’s hit song ‘Happy’ and ‘Ain’t That Peculiar’, a Marvin Gaye classic, the family just isn’t thinking about going down that legal road again. At least, not right now.
“I’m not going to lie. I do think they sound alike,” Nona Gaye, Marvin’s 40-year-old daughter, said of the two songs. But she quickly added, “We’re not in that space.”
“We’re just in the moment today and we’re satisfied,” Janis Gaye, Marvin’s ex-wife, added.
It was a hard-won victory for the Gaye family. “My heart started pounding but I still had faith that the verdict was going to go our way,” Janis recalled. And when the jury ruled in their favor, she said, “That’s when I lost it completely. And I was filled with incredibly powerful emotion.”
In response to some critics claiming that the family is mistaking inspiration for theft, Nona said, “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being inspired. I’ve been inspired when I made music before. Inspiration’s fine, but the line is when you decide to take the complete and utter essence out of the song. When you take all the meat, and leave the bones.”
“When I first heard that he [Williams] had said he did it [wrote the song] in an hour, my first thought was, ‘That’s because it was already done in 1977.'” Janis added. “So why would it take you any longer than 20 minutes… to redo something that had already been done 40 years earlier?”
But for now, the family is just happy the legal battle is over. “It’s been a long journey so we need time to reflect… Right now it’s all surreal,” said Marvin Gaye III.