DJ Danger Mouse remixed the vocals from Jay-Z's The Black Album and the Beatles' White Album and called his creation The Grey Album. He sent about 3,000 promo copies out, and was soon served with a cease-and-desist notice from EMI, who owns the rights to the White Album master. Danger Mouse complied with EMI's order, but Stay Free! (sponsors of the Illegal Art Exhibit) and other fans and activists continued distributing the record over the Internet. EMI sent legal threats to many of us as well but later backed down. Next, SONY/ATV -- who owns the rights to the Beatles' compositions -- stepped in and sent our internet service provider a DMCA takedown notice (3/1/2004). We secured legal representation from the EFF, moved our website to the Online Policy Group (a free-speech ISP), and responded to Sony with this letter. Fortunately, Sony also dropped the case and The Grey Album remains safely online.

For more info, check out:

EFF's overview of the Grey Album case
Grey Tuesday (protest organized by Downhill Battle)
New York Times on Grey Tuesday
Rolling Stone's review of the Grey Album
Boston Globe's review.

Press queries: carrie (at)

* * *


Grey Album .torrent courtesy of You will need Bittorrent software to download this.

Illegal Art logo adapted from American Alphabet, by Heidi Cody
created 2024 :: Contact us :: a project of Stay Free!