I’m not really sure how to describe The Kleptones and their album A Night At The Hip Hopera, but I can tell you how I found it. Disney sent takedown notices to those who were mirroring the work, raising the ire of the Copyfight community. You see, The Kleptones are really quite good, but their album is a mashup of Queen songs, and Disney (who owns the rights to Queen’s music), got itchy. There’s lots of debate about whether these sorts of things actually constitute copyright infringement or whether they’re unsophiticated rip-offs of others’ hard works. My answer is to look at other media. Are the Disney movies of classic tales works of art in their own right? Disney sure thinks so.
Sadly, The Kleptones are hardly alone. EMI has been battling against DJ Danger Mouse and his Grey Album, a mashup of The Beatles and Jay-Zee. Grey Tuesday is the protest site, and BannedMusic.org has sprung up to link fans with underground music.