Remember “Men at Work”? They’re Being Sued Over “Down Under.” It’s 2009


Antipodean popsters Men at Work scored a hit stateside in 1983 with their ode to meeting people from Australia “Down Under.” 26 year later they’re being sued by Larrikin Publishing, who claim that the song steals the flute riff from “Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree,” written in 1934.

Marge: We have them in America. They’re called “bullfrogs.”

Clerk: What? That’s an odd name. I’d have called them “chazzwazzers.”

— the Australia episode of The Simpsons

Larrikin Publishing bought the rights to “Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree” in 1990. (Disclaimer: the following is speculation) Now they’re trying to make money any way they can in the financial apocalypse. Someone noticed that the flute riff was a little similar to “Down Under.” Cue lawsuit.

Source: NME

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One Response to Remember “Men at Work”? They’re Being Sued Over “Down Under.” It’s 2009

  1. ryanbnm666 August 9, 2009 at 7:56 am #

    I think it is a bit much but i have listened to it and it is almost exact. But there is no need to sue because people think that Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree is a ‘Australian Song’ because people associate Kookaburras with Australia. This song is all about ‘The land down under’ (Australia) so why not. If there was a song about England and they used part of the national anthem, they probably wouldn’t get sued.

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