Pharrell: 'Blurred Lines' Ruling 'Is About Protecting the Intellectual Rights of People Who Have Ideas'
After a Los Angeles jury earlier this month found Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke had ripped off Marvin Gaye's "Got to Give It Up" on their hit "Blurred Lines," Williams is still adamant in his stance his song was original.
"There was no infringement," he told the Financial Times in his first interview since the ruling.
"You can't own feelings and you can't own emotions ... [in music] there are only the notations and the progression," he added. "Those were different."
Willaims' comments that ran Thursday follow an open letter by Gaye's children, who defended the iconic singer's estate in the lawsuit. In that letter, they said, "Great artists like our dad intentionally build their music to last, but we as the caretakers of such treasures, have an obligation to be vigilant about preserving the integrity of the music so that future generations understand its origins and feel its effect as the artist intended, and to assure that it retains its value."
But Williams claimed the verdict is bad for artists, saying it, "handicaps any creator out there who is making something that might be inspired by something else."
"This applies to fashion, music, design ... anything," he said. "If we lose our freedom to be inspired we're going to look up one day and the entertainment industry as we know it will be frozen in litigation. This is about protecting the intellectual rights of people who have ideas.... Everything that's around you in a room was inspired by something or someone. If you kill that, there's no creativity."
When asked whether he and Thicke would appeal the verdict, Williams declined to comment. He said, "We're working out our next steps right now."