A federal jury ruled today (June 15) in Detroit that the White Stripes don’t have to share royalties with a producer who worked on the rock band’s first two albums and claimed he played a pivotal role in creating its signature sound.
The eight-member panel deliberated about 20 minutes before returning its verdict in U.S. District Court, rejecting claims by Jim Diamond, who is listed as co-producer on the band’s self-titled first album, released in 1999.
Diamond also is listed as sound mixer on “De Stijl,” released in 2000, but the White Stripes denied that he helped create their style. The band said it had paid him $35 an hour for time at his Ghetto Recorders studio.
Jack White, singer and guitarist for the two-member band, told the Detroit News outside court he was pleased with the verdict, noting, “You never know what’s going to happen in a trial.”
A message seeking comment was left this afternoon for Stephen Wasinger, a lawyer for Diamond. The trial in Diamond’s federal lawsuit before U.S. District Judge Avern Cohn started Monday.
Earlier today, with Jack White and White Stripes drummer Meg White looking on, lawyer Bert Deixler argued that Diamond’s engineering work on the records did not meet the standard for authorship.
“None of that constitutes originating an original work or causing it to come into being,” Deixler said.
Wasinger, arguing for Diamond, cited liner notes from the 1999 album in which the band gave Diamond co-producer credit. “Mr. Diamond at that time, in that place, was equally talented,” Wasinger told the jury.
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