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Heather McDonald

Who Wrote the Song?

By July 24, 2007

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If you pay attention to what is happening in the world of music news - or, if you read the gossip columns (and you know who you are) - then you might be aware of a big old controversy brewing between Avril Lavigne and songwriter Chantel Kreviazuk. Kreviazuk, who is an artist in her own right but is better known for being the songwriting brains behind many top hits, including some Avril Lavinge songs, recently suggested in an interview that the notion that Avril Lavigne is actually a songwriter herself is pure comedy gold. The charge is that Ms. Lavinge allows people like Kreviazuk to write songs for her and then helps herself to a co-songwriting credit. Kreviazuk backed down from her comments after Lavinge balked, but the Chalotte Examiner recently ran a great article detailing the problem with pop song writing credits. Artists have a huge incentive to claim they are themselves songwriters and not just performers - songwriting gives them more credibility, but perhaps more importantly, the big money is in the songwriting. Songwriting royalties are attached to that song for life and are still being paid out long after anyone cares to pay to see the performer anymore. Whether Avril Lavigne is guilty as charged or Chantel Kreviazuk has some other agenda is beside the point - there is still a lot of nudge nudge, wink wink "songwriting" going on in the music business, which should be of major concern to songwriters.

You don't have to be at the Avril Lavigne level in the music business to worry about this, either. Simple misunderstandings between band members can lead to a lot of songwriting confusing no matter how many albums you're selling. To keep things fair, and to avoid needless hassle down the line, you should always be clear about who wrote each song you have - especially if you have an album coming out. You may not think it matters now, but if that albums start selling like crazy, and you think you are the sole songwriter, and the bass player thinks they co-write the song, watch the sparks fly! Always, always, always nail these details down before they become a problem if you are serious about your music career.
Comments
December 11, 2008 at 1:33 am
(1) Kar says:

What you failed to mention was the song “Contagious” that Chantal claimed was her song, was indeed not written by her, not one word of lyrics did Chantal write, in fact the one and only similarity between the two songs shared was the title “Contagious”. As it turns out the song was actually written by Avril Lavigne and Evan Taubenfeld (Avril’s former guitar player and still dear friend), and that is the reason why Chantal Kreviazuk had to retract her false statement that Avril stole her song.

From what I have read, Chantal wanted to write with Avril again but Avril decide that because they did not have an substantial hits form their collaborations on Avril’s second album, Chantal was upset and lashed out at Avril and falsely accused her of stealing her song ‘Contagious’ and more.

In the end people are still going to believe whatever they already thought about Avril’s writing skills, but to omit the above facts is to skew the truth and for those who still are undecided, at least they should have all the facts so they can make an informed decision about Avril’s writing skills.

May 16, 2012 at 6:29 am
(2) Barb says:

I don’t think Chantal was talking only about that song. She was likely talking about other lines AL crosses when it comes to ripping off songs, as well. Avril Lavigne is as fake as Britney Spears or any of those other manufactured pop tarts and I don’t believe for a minute that she writes any of her own music. I’m not just saying this because of what Chantal said… it’s just so obvious that she thinks she can get away with anything because of “who she is”.

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