Did Hozier rip off Feist on Take Me to Church? Judge for yourself . . .
Musician and song deconstructor Chilly Gonzalez reckons Hozier’s influences are a little too obvious
It’s turning out to be a bumper year for pop hits that sound like other tunes. We’ve seen Sam Smith admit that Stay With Me sounds like Tom Petty’s 1989 hit I Won’t Back Down. As a result, Petty and co-writer Jeff Lynn are now credited as co-writers of Stay With Me.
Mark Ronson’s Uptown Funk added five co-writers to the publishing credits in May after the Gap Band made the case that his tune sounded a heck of a lot like their song Oops Up Side Your Head.
Now comes a question mark over Wicklow troubadour Hozier and Take Me To Church. Canadian musician and producer Chilly Gonzales posted a video online this week pointing out similarities between the tune and his regular collaborator Feist’s How Come You Never Go There. Feist’s song was released two years before Hozier’s track.
As he played both tracks back to back, Gonzales commented on the coincidence that both tunes used “sad chords” and “slow triple time”.
There’s no doubt that Hozier is an admirer of Feist’s work. Asked by American Songwriter magazine in 2014 who he’d like to co-write with, he said “there’s too many to mention. I’ve always been a huge Leslie Feist fan.” He could get his co-writing wish if the pop lawyers decide to take this further.