The Rolling Stones Sued Over 2020 Single “Living in a Ghost Town” Lyrics

A songwriter filed a copyright lawsuit against The Rolling Stones’ Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, alleging that the band’s 2020 single “Living in a Ghost Town” was based on two of his songs.

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In the suit filed in a New Orleans federal court on March 10, Spanish artist Sergio Garcia Fernandez, who performs under the name Angelslang, said that the Stones’ 2020 single, “Living in a Ghost Town,” was based on his 2006 song “So Sorry” and “Seed of God (Talent in the Trash)” released in 2007.

Though both songs only had fewer than 1,000 streams on Spotify, Fernandez claims that he gave a demo CD to “an immediate family member” of Jagger featuring the songs in 2013.

“The immediate family member … confirmed receipt … to the plaintiff via e-mail, and expressed that the musical works of the plaintiff and its style was a sound The Rolling Stones would be interested in using,” according to the complaint, which did not include a copy of the alleged email from the member of Jagger’s family mentioned.

The lawsuit states that Jagger and Richards had “misappropriated many of the recognizable and key protected elements” from both songs, including the “harmonic and chord progression and melody” from “Seed of God” and the “vocal melodies, the chord progressions, the drum beat patterns, the harmonica parts, the electric bass line parts, the tempos, and other key signatures” from “So Sorry.”

Fernandez’s lawyers also wrote that the “Defendants never paid plaintiff, nor secured the authorization for the use of ‘So Sorry’ and ‘Seed of God.’”

The Rolling Stones released “Living in a Ghost Town” in the middle of the pandemic in April 2020. The first new material from the band since 2012, the track reached No. 3 on the Billboard Hot Rock & Alternative Songs chart.

Earlier in 2023, the band recently released their live album GRRR Live!which was pulled from the Stone’s show at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey in 2012 and features appearances by Bruce Springsteen, Lady Gaga, and John Mayer, among other special guests.

Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage

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