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Village People Singer Wins Copyright Case

Sep 12, 2013
Originally published on September 12, 2013 5:05 am
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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And today's Last Word In Business is more of an acronym. Village People singer Victor Willis has finally won a share of the income from his most famous song.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "YMCA")

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The New York Times reports that Willis - you know him as the police officer - has emerged from six years of legal wrestling with a new copyright in hand. The victory gives him substantial control over "YMCA" and 32 other Village People tunes.

INSKEEP: He said he's considering a move that would ban Village People songs from being performed by his former bandmates. Yes - the Cowboy, the Construction Worker, the Indian and all the rest are still around and touring, but without Mr. Willis. So today's Last Word In Business is - sing it with me; here it comes. Here it comes...

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "YMCA")

: (Singing) ...It's fun to stay at the YMCA...

INSKEEP, MONTAGNE: (Singing along) YMCA...

INSKEEP: And that's the business news on MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

MONTAGNE: And I'm Renee Montagne.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "YMCA") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.