Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but not to the Pet Shop Boys. The English synth-pop duo consisting of singer Neil Tennant and keyboardist Chris Lowe are not amused that Drake interpolates lyrics of the Pet Shop Boys hit “West End Girls” into his song “All the Parties” on his new album For All the Dogs.
In an X post, Pet Shop Boys write, “Surprising to hear @Drake singing the chorus of ‘West End Girls’ in the track ‘All the Parties’ on his new album. No credit given or permission requested.”
Billboard reports, “The credits for Drake’s ‘All the Parties,' which features Chief Keef, do not include Pet Shop Boys members Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe on Spotify Apple Music or the Songview database performance rights organizations use to track fractional ownership. As for ‘West End Girls,' the song enjoyed a fruitful run in 1986, netting the top slot on the Billboard Hot 100 that year — the group’s highest-charting song on the tally.”
In the song “All the Parties,” Drake sings, “And it’s six, our town a dead end world/East End boys and West End girls.” In “West End Girls,” Pet Shop Boys sing: “In a West End town, a dead end world/The East End boys and West End girls.”
Drake Has a Long History of Sampling Other Artists' Music for His Own
Pet Shop Boys are not the first artist Canadian rapper-singer Drake has sampled (stolen?) for his music. According to The A.V. Club, rapper Rye Rye accused Drake of sampling her song “Shake It to the Ground” in two different songs: “Currents” and “Calling for You.” Billboard reports, “Drake has a long history of interpolating records. His most recent comes from T.I.’s 2003 song '24’s,' which subtly resides on Drake and 21 Savage’s Her Loss single ‘Rich Flex.' Certified Lover Boy included several samples from songs by the Beatles, NSYNC and R. Kelly. His Hot 100 chart-topper ‘Way Too S–y,' also from CLB, sampled Right Said Fred’s 1991 single ‘I’m Too S–y.' Shortly after the album was released in September 2021, a source told Billboard that the writing credit splits had yet to be finalized. That’s a common practice among writers, but one that can become particularly problematic with interpolation as it gives the original songwriters and their rights holders greater leverage when negotiating a share of the song’s copyright.”
Pet Shop Boys have not made a statement about legal action and Drake has not commented on the Pet Shop Boys post below.
Surprising to hear @Drake singing the chorus of “West End girls” in the track “All the Parties” on his new album. No credit given or permission requested.#PetText #kobaltmusic #WestEndgirls #Drake #PetShopBoys pic.twitter.com/P5siIccTw9
— Pet Shop Boys (@petshopboys) October 6, 2023
Robert DeSalvo is a professional writer and editor with over 25 years of experience at print and online publications such as Movieline, Playboy, PCH, Fandango, and The A.V. Club. He currently lives in Los Angeles, the setting of his favorite movie, Blade Runner. Robert has interviewed dozens of actors, directors, authors, musicians, and other celebrities during his journalism career, including Brian De Palma, Nicolas Cage, Dustin Hoffman, John Waters, Sigourney Weaver, Julianne Moore, Bryan Cranston, Anne Rice, and many more. Horror movies, sci-fi, cult films as well as gothic, postpunk, and synthwave music are what Robert geeks over.