Robbie Williams has offered 25% of the publishing income from the song ‘JESUS IN A CAMPERVAN’ to NEW YORK based LUDLOW MUSIC following a dispute over lyrics in the song.
New York based Ludlow Music Inc claim Robbie should have credited US folk legend Woodie Guthrie, who died in 1967, for music and lyrics in ‘Jesus In A Campervan’ on his ‘I’ve Been Expecting You’ album. The company claims that the song takes lyrics from Guthrie‘s ‘New York Town’, which was adapted by Loudon Wainwright III on his 1973 song ‘I Am The Way’. While Wainwright is credited on Robbie‘s album, Woodie Guthrie isn’t.
In a press release issued by Williams‘ label, EMI say the matter is simply a “sampling dispute”, as Williams credited both Ludlow and Loudon Wainwright III on his album. The release goes on to say that “the principal issue is the appropriate share of the composition that should be allotted to Ludlow Music“.
EMI claim that worldwide income from ‘Jesus In A Campervan’ at present totals approximately #80,000, and income attributable to the lyrics of the song would be half, i.e., #40,000. Williams has offered half of this, which is in the region of #20,000. Ludow Music is seeking damages of at least #50,000, costs, plus an injunction to stop the sale of the track ‘Jesus In A Campervan’.