Lady Gaga denies songwriter's claim she plagiarized 'Shallow'

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Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper perform "Shallow" at the Oscars in 2019.Ed Herrera / Walt Disney Television via Getty

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/ Source: TODAY
By Alexander Kacala

Lady Gaga is defending herself after a musician came forward with allegations that her Oscar-winning song, "Shallow," copied his own work from seven years ago.

In a statement provided to TODAY, Gaga's lawyer vehemently denied the accusation.

"By speaking up here, Lady Gaga is defending the rights of every successful artist who has been targeted by people looking for a quick payday," Orin Snyder told TODAY.

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Musician Steve Ronsen is claiming that Gaga’s “Shallow,” featured in her film “A Star Is Born,” plagiarizes his 2012 song “Almost.” Specifically, Ronsen reportedly is alleging that a three-note progression from his song "Almost" corresponds to the hook of “Shallow.”

Ronsen and his attorney, Mark D. Shirian, asked for “millions and millions” in a settlement, according to Page Six.

The lawyer for Gaga — whose birth name is Stefani Germanotta — addressed what he described as "opportunistic claims" with TODAY.

“Mr. Ronsen and his lawyer are trying to make easy money off the back of a successful artist," Snyder told TODAY. "It is shameful and wrong. I applaud Lady Gaga for having the courage and integrity to stand up on behalf of successful artists who find themselves on the receiving end of opportunistic claims such as this. Should Mr. Shirian proceed with this case, Lady Gaga will fight it vigorously and will prevail.”

Lady Gaga accepts best pop duo/group performance for "Shallow" during the Grammy Awards earlier this year.Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images

Ronsen told TODAY in an email statement he hasn't seen "A Star Is Born," but "heard it's pretty good."

"It was brought to my attention by many people that the 'Shallow' song sounds like mine," Ronsen said. "I did not seek this out.

"I admire Lady Gaga and I just want to get to the bottom of this," he continued. "There are other writers that wrote the 'Shallow' song, including Mark Ronson."

He added, "I have secured a musicologist who also agrees that the songs are similar. I am simply going about this how anyone else would to investigate any possible infringement."

“We provided Mr. Shirian a lengthy letter with the findings of multiple leading musicologists, each of whom found no actionable similarities between the two songs," Snyder said. "Even Shirian’s own musicologist acknowledged the generic three note progression is present in many other songs predating his client’s song.”

“Shallow” was recorded by Gaga and Bradley Cooper for "A Star Is Born," released in 2018. The single went on to win numerous awards, including the Academy Award for best original song. In December, it was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America.