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Eric Clapton sued over songwriting credit

Eric Clapton
Eric Clapton (Image credit: Getty)

The estate of late bluesman Bo Carter are suing Eric Clapton over what they say is a wrong songwriting credit.

Clapton covered the track Alberta on his 1992 Unplugged album and credited the song to Huddie ‘Lead Belly’ Ledbetter.

However, in a lawsuit filed in Nashville (opens in new tab), the estate of Bo Carter claim that the song in question was actually a rendition of Carter’s Corrine, Corrina – a track which, over time, became interchangeable with Alberta, according to Carter’s step-grandson Miles Floyd.

Floyd’s lawyer Barry Shrum tells the Associated Press (via Canoe): “This is a situation where you have the estate, the rightful owners of Bo’s intellectual property, just trying to get what’s rightfully theirs and get credit where credit is due.

“Bo created this song and started, in essence, a genre in music and influenced many performers in the future, and he deserves that credit.”

Carter, who died in 1964, was known to perform with his brothers in the Mississippi Sheiks in the 30s.

The lawsuit states that they covered the song using the lyrics ‘Alberta, Alberta’ rather than ‘Corrine, Corrina’ and titled it Alberta Blues. And although Ledbetter did record a track titled Alberta, it was not musically similar to the original Corrine, Corrina, according the suit.

The lawsuit is seeking $5 million from Clapton, Warner Music Group, Rhino Music, MTV and Viacom.

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Scott looks after and updates Louder’s online buyer’s guides and also scouts out the best deals for music fans from every corner of the internet. He's spent more than 28 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014, where he wrote extensively about rock, metal, prog and more, before moving to the eCommerce team full-time in 2020. Scott has previous written for publications including IGN, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky.