Ugly row breaks out over Beautiful local song

2016-08-17 11:33

Cape Town – A social media storm erupted on Wednesday morning after poet Gert Vlok Nel accused Afrikaans singer Theuns Jordaan of "stealing" his song, Beautiful in Beaufort-Wes.

In an open letter on his Facebook page, Vlok Nel wrote: "No Theuns. I have kept quiet about you for long enough … You stole Beautiful in Beaufort-Wes. You never asked me if you could record it."

In the letter Vlok Nel details instances where Jordaan sang the song without crediting him or mentioning his name. He also says that the song made Jordaan famous and "a lot richer".

Listen to Vlok Nel's version of the song here:

The song Beautiful in Beaufort-Wes appears on Jordaan’s debut album, Vreemde Stad in 2001 and also on his Grootste Treffers album in 2007.  

"Through the 18 years, with incredible effort, I only managed to collect about R8000 from your album sales in total, from your labels, without any help from you, although my song is on 500 000 of your sold albums," Vlok Nel writes. 

See Vlok Nel’s full post below:

Channel24 reached out to Theuns Jordaan’s spokesperson for comment. This is what he says about the matter:

"I am stunned by Gert’s accusations and how he understands the workings of the music industry. We’ve had this conversation before and I explained to him that the payouts to him need to come from the different record labels. In the case of Beautiful in Beaufort-Wes it was Wildebeest Records and EMI (these days part of Universal Records). The responsibility of the royalties from the Skouspel DVD on which Beautiful in Beaufort-Wed appears, lies with Select Musiek that is part of Sony these days. The payments to songwriters never come from the singer of the song, but from the record labels who own the recordings. That is how it works worldwide and also here in SA. 

"With regards to SAMRO, it is the responsibility of the publisher of the song to follow up payments with them, not the singer of the song. Gert should therefore contact SAMRO himself.

"I have always had the biggest respect for Gert as a songwriter and I hope he can get the fees he believes are owed to him from the companies that owe him. (sic)"

This is not the first time Jordaan has made another musician’s song famous. His debut album also included the song Sonvanger, which, to many people’s surprise, was not written by him, but by Valiant Swart. Other artists who have recently released covers of Sonvanger include Corlea Botha and Refentse.

Listen to Jordaan's version of the song here:

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