In a recent interview with GQ, rapper-producer Pharrell Williams spoke with producer Rick Rubin on his “Blurred Lines” lawsuit.
According to GQ, the final verdict stated that there was a breach of copyright and $5 million was to be awarded to Gaye’s estate, paid by Thicke and Williams. Looking back on the incident, Pharrell now states that it “hurt [his] feelings, because [he] would never take anything from anyone,” and that “it really set [him] back.”
Williams detailed his behind-the-scenes production process when it comes to creating any hits with his Neptunes production partner, Chad Hugo. Though Hugo did not work on “Blurred Lines,” he said that the duo generally “reverse-engineer the songs that do something to us emotionally and … figure out if we can build a building that doesn’t look the same but makes you feel the same way.” Pharrell later added, “I did that in ‘Blurred Lines’ and got myself in trouble.”
While continuing his conversation with Rubin, he notes that Stevie Wonder also told him to get the correct musicologist ,because juries would not understand the technicalities of what he created. “The song is nothing like the song,” said Rubin. “Nope, but the feeling was,” Pharrell responded. “Yeah, but the feeling isn’t something you can copyright,” Rubin continues. “No, you can’t copyright a feeling,” Williams says.
Moving onward from the legalities of “Blurred Lines,” the artist has recently co-produced Beck’s upcoming LP, Hyperspace, among other projects. This also includes the track “Letter to My Godfather” on Netflix’s original film The Black Godfather, which pays homage to the legendary music executive Clarence Avant.
Watch the GQ video in full below
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