Today in the Law Courts in the Strand Mr Justice Blackburne gave his judgement on Matthew Fisher’s claim that after 38 years he thought he ought to be credited with part-authorship of the song A Whiter Shade of Pale.
The judge took the view that “the passage of so many years has not rendered a fair trial impossible” and that Matthew’s unsupported testimony was worthy of a share of the song, despite evidence to the contrary by the expert musicologist and the defence put forward by Gary and Keith and the Publisher.
In fact the song was assigned to the publisher in March 1967 and – on hearing the demo – David Platz of Onward Music had already written to Gary Brooker pronouncing it to be a hit: all this before Matthew had joined the band.
The judgment is now subject to further scrutiny by the Appeal Court.
Chris Cooke, Procol Harum's manager
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