In 1965, Joseph Allen McDonald, aka Country Joe, shamelessly ripped off Kid Ory’s “Muskrat Ramble” note-for-note for his Vietnam-era protest song “Feelin’ Like I’m Fixin’ To Die Rag.”
“In 2003 McDonald was sued for copyright infringement over his signature song, specifically the “One, two, three, what are we fighting for?” chorus part, as derived from the 1926 early jazz classic “Muskrat Ramble“, co-written by Kid Ory. The suit was brought by Ory’s daughter Babette, who held the copyright at the time. Since decades had already passed from the time McDonald composed his song in 1965, Ory based her suit on a new version of it recorded by McDonald in 1999. The court however upheld McDonald’s laches defense, noting that Ory and her father were aware of the original version of the song, with the same questionable section, for some three decades without bringing a suit. In 2006, Ory was ordered to pay McDonald $395,000 for attorney fees and had to sell her copyrights to do so.”
[McDonald’s parents were communists and named him after Joseph Stalin according to Wiki. That explains a lot.]
From the This Shall Not Pass Department: A Heinz ketchup packet caused a New York woman to be diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. TRUE.
R.I.P. Dominic Frontiere (17 June 1931- 21 December 2017).
What’s the smallest hole a mouse shrew can get through? 16.5mm in diameter according to this.
Jim Flora (1914-1998) was a graphic commercial artist whose work creeped me out when I was very young.
Mambo For Cats was a 33rpm EP featuring various artists. It’s now a collectors’ item for the album cover designed by Jim Flora, and original copies are worth hundreds. Papa had a copy so when I saw the album cover recently, fireworks went off in my head, and the only song I remembered from the compilation was “Muskrat Ramble Mambo.”
[Top image found here.]