Golan v. Holder Argument Recap

It was my great honor to argue for the petitioners in Golan v. Holder before the Supreme Court of the United States last week. SCOTUS blog has an excellent recap of the argument on its case page, and the Court has posted the transcript and audio recording.

Argument coverage from the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post all point to Jimi Hendrix as the star of the show. Op / Ed pieces in the New York Times and the Huffington Post (here and here) do a nice job of explaining what's at stake.

Our synopsis of the case is here, along with all of the parties' briefs. We expect a decision by June.


Nice job in the oral arguments! I was fascinated to hear the Solicitor General posit that Jimmy Hendrix' rendition of the SSB (had the tune been under copyright) could have been a fair use. The case law I've read suggests that this is lunacy; I can't think of a single court that would not regard this as an infringing performance (and possible derivative work). Does the SG really think that, or was it just something to be written off as a trivial aside, blamed on the tension of the moment? Or am I wrong entirely?

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