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Makihara files suit against Matsumoto

posted on 2007-03-23 19:17 EDT
Matsumoto claimed Chemistry's "Yakusoku no Basho" album lifted lyrics from Galaxy Express 999. Makihara Noriyuki sues Matsumoto, demanding proof of claims.

Singer/Songwriter Makihara Noriyuki has taken Leiji Matsumoto to court over lyrics contained in "Yakusoku no Basho", a song by the J-Pop/J-Rap group Chemistry.

Last fall, the group released their latest album, "Yakusoku no Basho". In the title song, the lyrics include the sentence "Yume wa jikan wo uragiranai / Jikan mo yume wo kesshite uragiranai" ("My dream does not betray time, nor does time betray my dream"). A similar phrase can be found in the 21st volume of Galaxy Express 999, where the protagonist states, "Jikan wa yume wo uragiranai. Yume mo jikan wo kesshite uragiranai." (Translated as above, except "my dream" and "time" are reversed in each phrase)

After noticing this similarity, Matsumoto contacted singer/songwriter Makihara Noriyuki, demanding an apology for plagiarizing the line. Makihara has refused, stating that and after repeatedly being asked for an apology, has now taken Matsumoto to court, demanding that he present evidence of the plagiarism. The suit was filed in Tokyo district court today. The claim states that if evidence cannot be shown, Makihara is seeking 22 million yen in damages (approximately $187,000 USD) due to the accusation.

Makihara's office said they "cannot comment" on the matter. Regarding the phrases, Matsumoto said, "In the past 10 years, I've used these words in lectures to countless youth."

The first round of oral arguments are set to begin by the end of the month.

A sample of the song in question can be heard on Sony Music Online Japan's album homepage.

Source: Yahoo! Japan


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