WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) – Turn up the volume, the judge told the lawyers in the Eminem case: “I’m not shy of loud music.”
It was one of many incongruous moments during a two-week trial that ended Friday at the High Court in Wellington. The music publishers for the Detroit rapper are suing New Zealand’s ruling conservative political party for copyright infringement.
During the case, the judge and phalanx of gowned lawyers listened studiously to profanity-laced rap. They also listened for similarities between classic songs like “La Bamba” and “Twist and Shout.”
At issue is the political party’s use of the song “Eminem Esque” in a television campaign ad. Eminem’s representatives say the track is a rip-off of the rapper’s acclaimed 2002 song “Lose Yourself,” while the party says it has similarities but is different.