All posts in “Audio”

Wedding Band Chester

Wedding Band chester

Cheshire wedding band Slinky have been performing their renditions of the hottest rock and pop anthems across the UK since forming in 2003. The band consists of four male members including Damien Williams on drums, Nick Studholme on guitar, producer / bassist Aaron Croxford and lead singer Stuart Brierley, and the foursome have made a name for themselves across Manchester, Liverpool and Merseyside.

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Function Band Slinky on Copyright Battles

It was when we were rehearsing one of our most popular tracks earlier this year, ‘Uptown Funk’ (as a party band we have played this track a lot this year – it is a real floor filler), that we realised how much it sounded like something we had heard before, perhaps at a school disco back in the day! The song was ‘Oops Upside Your Head’. Sure enough, a quick Google search revealed that we weren’t the only ones to have noticed this. The Gap Band had noticed too which ultimately resulted in them being added as co-writers of the song, earning them 17% royalties.

There have been many high profile copyright battles between artists over the years. A recent one involved Robin Thicke and Pharell over their song ‘Blurred Lines’. The family of Marvin Gaye claimed that the song had plagiarized Gaye’s 1977 song ‘Got To Give It Up’. This was strongly contested by Thicke and Pharrell who admitted to being influenced by the song but denied any infringement of copyright. Despite their protestations they were order to pay Gaye’s family US$7.4 million in damages. What do you think?

One that seems pretty indisputable is the Ghostbusters theme, released by Ray Parker Jr in 1984 but claimed by Huey Lewis to have been copied from his track ‘I Want a New Drug’. Lewis had originally been asked to write the theme tune for Ghostbusters but declined as he was busy working on the soundtrack for Back to the Future – it was a good year for movies, and soundtracks! Listening to the two tracks it is hard to imagine that Ray Parker Jr could really have denied the claim. Who you gonna call? Erm… my lawyer. In fact it didn’t come to that. They settled out of court.

When Vanilla Ice released ‘Ice Ice Baby’ in 1990, it seemed pretty obvious that he had sampled Queen and David Bowie’s track ‘Under Pressure’. His mistake though was thinking he could get away without asking permission and crediting them. Initially claiming that he had slightly changed the melody, he later admitted to using the sample, and paid up!

Musical history is indeed littered with these cases. Take the track ‘Fight Test’ by The Flaming Lips which sounds so much like ‘Father and Son’ by Cat Stevens that Stevens now receives 75% of all royalties from this song.

Considering Cat Stevens gets 75% royalties you have to feel a little sorry for Belgian songwriter Salvatore Acquaviva who took Madonna to court claiming that her 1998 hit ‘Frozen’ had been copied from his own track ‘Ma Vie Fout le Camp’. The judge agreed and banned Madonna’s track from being played on Belgian TV and Radio. Harsh. Whether it’s subconscious or just a case of artists seeing what they can get away with, even some of the seemingly coolest songwriters around have been accused and found guilty of plagiarism. From Led Zep, to George Harrison, From Coldplay to Radiohead.

What do you think? – do you know of any songs which sound strangely like someone else’s? Leave us a comment.

Slinky’s August Journal

Wow what a busy August we are having – it may be holiday time for a lot of people, but it is definitely our busiest time of year. We will be performing at 9 weddings this month. We have already been to South Wales where we had 2 weddings back to back, in Bridgend and Brecon (we camped, thankfully the weather was kind), North Wales, Ramsbottom, Derby and Southport and still have Peckforton and Cumbria and back down to Monmouthsire!

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Slinky Recommends!

In our job as a function band we travel up and down the country performing at weddings, parties and corporate events. Naturally we come across many suppliers, venues, caterers, photographers and so on. In this blog we thought we would give a little shout out to a few that have really stood out for us recently.

So starting with venues, one of our favourites has been Headingley Cricket Ground. We performed at a wedding here and in our experience the staff were really hospitable which of course is very important when you are organising something as stressful as a wedding. They really couldn’t do enough to help, not to mention the fact that the venue itself is a fantastic backdrop for a wedding. We left an important piece of kit at the venue and they mailed it to us the next day with no hesitation. They wouldn’t even allow us to pay the postage! Another venue with great staff we found was Hope Street Hotel in Liverpool. The bar staff particularly were really cool guys and deserve a shout out for their great banter and energy. There’s nothing worse than members of staff who would clearly rather be somewhere else. You couldn’t say that about these guys!

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A Look at Celebrity Parties With Slinky!

As a premier wedding, and corporate event band, we get to attend a lot of great parties! But how do the rich and famous celebrate? This week we’re looking at some of the wildest, craziest and extravagant parties thrown by celebrities.

Elton Johns 50th Birthday

It’s no surprise that Elton is appearing in this list. Extravagant, flamboyant and worth a fortune, you would expect him to celebrate his 50th in style wouldn’t you. With over 500 guests and an outfit that cost no less than £70,000 (yes, that’s right) there was no expense spared. Elton even had to hire an extra large vehicle, just to fit his huge wig in!

Our song for Elton – Sharp Dressed Man, ZZ Top

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Slinky – Live Wedding Band – Coping in a Competitive Market Place

In our early days together as a live party band, marketing was a much simpler task than it is today, but then, our bookings were in the main, more local. Booked by those who had heard of us through word of mouth, or from local gigs we had played. We still get many bookings through word of mouth, it is after all the best form of advertising, but these days there is so much more to marketing, and with it, more opportunities. We no longer think of ourselves as a Northwest Wedding Band but a UK Wedding Band. These days we have enquires coming from all over the UK, and beyond.

We pride ourselves on our professionalism, our repertoire and our performance – but how do we get this across to potential customers? Brides and grooms looking for their wedding entertainment, corporate event planners looking for a great live party band? These potential customers now have access to hundreds of great bands at the click of a button? All they need to do is go to Google and type in ‘Live Band’ and they will be spoilt for choice! We have to make sure we are the best we can be, but we also have to make sure that our marketing is up there with the best aswell.

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North West Party Band Slinky to Play Special ‘Dad Rock’ Gig!!

Well, not really, but as it’s Fathers Day this Sunday, in this blog we have compiled our ultimate Fathers Day set list, featuring some of the finest ‘Dad Rock’ tracks we could think of. You know the ones. The music we were all subjected to on long car journeys as kids. The songs that made our Dads say ‘they don’t write them like this anymore’. The songs that dads seem think YouTube was made for.

Dad rockers refuse to move with the times. These are the songs of their youth and they won’t be moved! We asked our Facebook followers to make some suggestions which we have added into the list. So here we go, Dads perfect gig…

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Top North West Party Band Slinky Have Got It Covered

As a top North West Party Band, cover versions are what Slinky does. Sometimes we stay true to the original, and sometimes we like to ‘Slinkify’ things a bit, take our versions of Seven Nation Army, or I Wanna Be Like You from The Jungle Book for example. The fact is that at a party, a wedding or any other event, people want songs that are familiar to them. Songs that they know and love – so they can get up, sing along, and have a damn good boogie! This combined with the thrill of a live band – it’s a winning combination, and the reason why so many people are choosing to book a live band for their wedding or other function.

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