menatwork 070710 Men At Work Ordered To Share Royalties Of Down UnderAn Australian judge has ruled that 1980s hitmakers [lastfm]Men At Work[/lastfm] must share a portion of the royalties from their hit track “Down Under” with a children’s music publisher.

The ruling comes after publisher Larrikin Music came forward, accusing the band of stealing the flute solo in “Down Under” from a copyrighted track called “Kookaburra Sits in the Old Gum Tree.”

Justice Peter Jacobson of the Australian federal court has ruled that the band’s chief songwriters [lastfm]Colin Hay[/lastfm] and [lastfm]Ron Strykert[/lastfm] must also recoup the company for any royalties dating back to 2002.

According to a new report from the BBC, Larrikin purchased the rights to the song after its original composer [lastfm]Marion Sinclair[/lastfm] died in 1990. The publishing company reportedly asked for a whopping 60 percent of the publishing rights to “Down Under,” a request that was quickly rebuffed by Justice Jacobson.

“I consider the figures put forward by Larrikin to be excessive, overreaching and unrealistic,” Jacobson told the BBC.

Music News Service distributed by Triton Media Group. Copyright © 2010 RTTNEWS. All Rights Reserved.

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