Elvis Costello really doesn’t mind if Olivia Rodrigo is using a guitar riff from his song. In fact, he doesn’t necessarily mind if any artist does, saying that that’s just how the music industry works.
The “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series” star came under fire recently from fans and artists claiming Rodrigo plagiarized multiple aspects of her debut album, “Sour.” On Thursday, Courtney Love put the 18-year-old on blast, saying the artwork for the “Sour” concert film was exceedingly similar to the artwork for an album from Love’s band Hole.
For one critic, the callout came as no surprise. Billy Edwards noted on Twitter that that the first song off the album, “Brutal,” is “a pretty much direct lift from Elvis Costello.” But Costello quickly came to Rodrigo’s defense.
“This is fine by me, Billy. It’s how rock and roll works,” Costello tweeted back. “You take the broken pieces of another thrill and make a brand new toy. That’s what I did.”
Costello added hashtag references to Bob Dylan’s 1965 hit Subterranean Homesick Blues, which inspired “Pump It Up” — the song containing the riff in question — and Chuck Berry’s 1956 single Too Much Monkey Business, which influenced the Dylan song.
Rodrigo herself has not publicly responded to Costello’s defense, but did pop in the comment section of Love’s Instagram post, saying “love u and live through this sooooo much.” Reps for Rodrigo did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for further comment.