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  Robbie robs words from old song
Updated 14 November 2001, 13.29
Robbie Williams could find himself short of cash
Robbie Williams may be forced to hand over a big sum of money to another songwriter, because he used some of his words without permission.

A judge decided that Robbie's song Jesus In A Camper Van sounds very similar to a song written by Woody Guthrie called I Am The Way.

Fact File
Robbie's version
I suppose even the Son of God gets it hard sometimes, especially when he goes round saying I am the way
Another singer, Loudon Wainwright III later changed the words slightly and recorded an updated version of the song, but got permission to do so.

The judge must now decide exactly how much money Robbie, who penned the song with writing partner Guy Chambers, owes Guthrie.

Record company knew in advance

Fact File
Wainwright's version
Every Son of God gets a little hard luck sometimes, especially when he goes round saying he is the way
Guthrie's lawyers said that Robbie's record company, Chrysalis, knew about the similar lyrics before the album was released, but decided to put it in record shops anyway.

They said Chrysalis offered some money to Guthrie, but when he decided it wasn't enough, the record company left the song on the album and released it.

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