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The Poison Lawsuit Seems Bogus

Posted on Tuesday, October 25, 2011 at 12:01AM by Registered CommenterAllyson B. Crawford | Comments16 Comments

So the boys in Poison are being sued by a now-defunct 80s band called Kid Rocker. The suit comes from Billy McCarthy and James Stonich, former members of Kid Rocker. Basically, the Kid Rocker members say that Poison ripped them off. Their lawsuit alleges that some of their songs were incorporated into Poison tracks, including the famous singles "Talk Dirty to Me" and "I Won't Forget You."

Apparently C.C. DeVille auditioned for Kid Rocker in 1984 and was given demo tapes of the band's songs. According to Kid Rocker, that's how Poison stumbled upon the obscure band's songs.

Capitol Records and EMI Music are also named in the suit. In addition to damages, McCarthy and Stonich want an injunction that prevents Poison from performing certain songs.

My thing is this: why wait this long to sue for copyright infringement? It's been over 25 years since Look What the Cat Dragged In came out. If you were a musician back in the 80s and you thought Poison of all bands ripped you off... wouldn't you be squawking a fit to any and everyone who would listen? This whole thing reeks of a cash grab. I know I should wait and reserve judgement, but it's hard on this one. What do you think?

Reader Comments (16)

Hey, if it's true, though I highly doubt it, at least it would force Poison to finally mix-up their set list.
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
I'd like to hear this other bands' stuff, before i decide
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterbrian L
I know if someone did that to me, I would have been screamin a long time ago!!! However, I like Metalboys answer!! - at least it would force Poison to finally mix-up their set list.
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRoy
These lawsuits come up every now and again. In the past 20 years I can only think of one that got anywhere. I know Joel Ellis accused Bon Jovi of stealing music from him. That went no where and he might of had some proof but having a case is an entirely different story. Proof of theft of intellectual property is tough and most attorneys won't touch it with a ten foot pole. You have to remember back in the 80's when bands got signed they signed the rights to their music away to the labels. So this lawsuit is going to be dead before it hits reality. It will remain a blip on a computer screen and a half hearted publicity stunt at best.
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterlonghairedrocker
Metalboy. LMAO!!!!
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGary
Metalboy = BEST ANSWER EVER!

They should sue that Rob Richie guy for stealing their name too. :-D
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKenny Ozz
THIS IS BULLSHIT!!! I mean how DARE Billy McCarthy and James Stonich claim that Poison stole their material. I mean that video of "Talk dirty to me" on sleazeroxx (which predates poison) is an [axl rose] illusion. c'mon people!!! WAKE UP! Bret Michaels is a completely stand up guy; tried and true; vetted by the BEST! Just look at the credtis on LWTCDI: All songs written, arranged, produced, etc... by POISON!

There is no way this song was stolen, because bret michaels never stole a single ounce of talent...just ask david lee roth, jon bon jovi, michael monroe, the kix singer, screamin minis, tom keifer.

someone in the cinderella 'camp' once told me that the line in Unskinny bop "we'll see whose ridin who in the end of the race" was a FU to other lead singers of the time. First, grammatically speaking, it should be, "who's riding whom...

But if you steal all of your material, of course you'll be riding high...for a while that is....

I hope Billy McCarthy and James Stonich get their day in court.
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterfletch
C.C. has been playing "Talk Dirty To Me" in some form since his band "The Shears". (which was before Screamin' Mimi ). Kid Rocker was never more than a "3rd on the bill" band. I don't know where that "signed to Atlantic" thing came from. Billy's later band, D'Molls was signed to Atlantic, but not Kid Rocker.

*Of special interest to Allyson, Ronnie 10/10 from KIX was a member of Kid Rocker for about a month, during the time he left KIX in the "Cool Kids" era.

P.S. If anyone should sue C.C. for lifting "Talk Dirty To Me", it should be Rick Neilsen of Cheap Trick, as T.D.T.M. is directly lifted from Cheap Trick's "She's Tight".
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAce
ace: allow me to clarify..."I hope Billy McCarthy and James Stonich get their day in court"

They might certainly get shown the door and told to make sure it doesn't hit them on the way out. But, THEY apparently need closure or are looking for a payday. If it's the former, closure it shall be. If it's the latter, good riddance. either way, they will NOT get what they're seeking.
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterfletch
I'm no legal expert, but let them file their claim. If it is baseless, the Poison camp can get it dismissed on summary judgment. If it is legitimate, then give the plaintiffs their day in court.

There could be any number of reasons why they waited so long....but if it occurred, waiting doesn't change the facts.
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBrian C.
Good point Brian C.

You've got to figure, by waiting so long to make this claim I'm sure they can ask for a greater amount based on the fact that Poison profited more over the years.

Lawsuits like this happen a lot more than you think. Believe it or not, many bands reach a settlement long before the case goes to court. Especially if it is true. That way they can pay off the originator and work out a financial arrangement to continue to play the songs in the future. This way the band who steals ideas is able to keep it hush so they don't ruin their public image... and the originator of the idea (song) gets paid also.

You would be surprised how many bands have agreements of this nature.
October 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRock-It
poison ripping off other bands??? whodever think that!!
October 26, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterlou
Prooving this is going to be very difficult.

Anyone could get into their garage, use a 4 track and record themselves playing poison songs, and then say that their demo tape was recorded before look what the cat dragged in.

Even if they prove that their songs where done before, they also have to show that exact sections of the song were taken. Easy for some songs (intro to sweet child o mine) but for any chord based song (which lets be honest, most sound similar to each other) it would be a lot harder to prove that that section of music was stolen.
October 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSteve
Kid Rocker was a GREAT band in the 80's managed by KISS's manager. CC Deville auditioned played hung out with Kid Rocker. Kid Rocker drummer definitely has at least a 30% payment interest in talk dirty to me. CC Deville NEVER gave them their tapes back and POSED as a GREAT WRITER Talk Dirty to me, Ride The Wind, Mama's fallen Angel etc. Why did they wait so long? They were promised Money from Poison Bandmembers! Trying not rock the boat they waited AND WAITED.......Fin\nally they said fuck those talentless theives! Should we Sue? Could we Sue? Well their attorney's has a "Continuing Wrong" clause which says if the "Wrong" copyright infriment continues they can go back forever even if they are given just ten years that is 4-8 million dollars. And destruction of Poison as a band. This won't go to court Poison will be forced to settle for big bucks TO SAVE POISON and precious BRET MICHAELS CAREERS. Interesting timing just a few monthe before Poisons worldwide tour with Def Leopard
LOOK WHAT THE LAW DRAGGED IN!!!!!
November 14, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKnowallaboutit
I saw the video and I could not believe that Poison really ripped this band. I love Poison but the proof is there ,,,, so sad
December 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTpro
Howie Hubberman here, I was there . Lawsuit is pretty fer fetched . STOP SILLY LAWSUITS . JUST GET REAL ! H.H.
May 25, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHowie Hubberman

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