Universal City: Protesters say Usher stole hit ‘Burn’ from Riverside songwriter

so what else is new?





R&B superstar Usher hit a $430-million gusher on his chart-topping “Burn “- while its songwriter claimed he’s been severely burned.

Songwriter Ernest Lee Straughter joined more than a dozen protesters Monday outside NBCUniversal Studios to demand the reality show judge on “The Voice” reach an equitable settlement.

Straughter this month appealed a federal court offer of $500,000 to settle his case.

“I just want a reasonable amount of money, then I’m gone,” said Straughter, 62, of Riverside, a songwriter/pianist from Los Angeles who has played with the likes of Earth, Wind and Fire, Barry Manilow and Herbie Hancock, who had sued Usher for plagiarism in 2008. “I lost my house and everything, because I had to represent myself.

“I wrote the music,” he said outside studio Gate 3 in Universal City. “Usher wrote the words. I just want my fair share for my family. ”

In 2004, Usher’s “Burn” hit top of the charts, with his album “Confessions” certified 10 times platinum.

But in his lawsuit, Straughter claimed his tune for “The Reasons Why” penned in 1998 for the group Reel Tight had been pilfered by the megastar. The suit named Usher, his co-writers and producer Jermaine Dupri.

Usher’s lawyers had said there was no relation between the songs, and had unsuccessfully asked the judge to reconsider her motion to allow the case to move forward.

A federal judge two years ago found there to be sufficient possibility that Usher and codefendants who produced the song had access to Slaughter’s work, “Reasons.” The judge accepted a musicologist’s report that noted substantial similarity between the songs and denied a motion to dismiss the case on summary judgment.

West Coast rap star Warren G. was named as the access link between Straughter and Usher, born Usher Terry Raymond IV. Usher’s lawyers denied Warren had any part in “Burn” creation.

Straughter, who had originally sought $25 million, said he was willing to settle for less than that. He lives with a fiance and three of his four children.

Usher Raymond has been the target of another plagiarism lawsuit from an aspiring New York songwriter who accused him and Alicia Keyes of pilfering material for the hit, “Caught Up. “

Palestinians flying Nazi Flag

Nazi Flag at mosque

Israeli settlers on their morning commute got quite the eyeful Monday morning when they saw a swastika-emblazoned red flag flying near a mosque in Beit Omar, a Palestinian village outside of Hebron.

Thousands of residents of Jewish settlements near Hebron and Bethlehem in Judea (the southern West Bank) drive to and from work on the road from which the flag was visible.

The Tazpit News Agency, which photographed the flying Nazi flag, reports residents “were astounded” to see the symbol under which millions of Jews were massacred during World War II now being prominently displayed by residents of a Palestinian town.

Uri Arnon, who saw the flag, told Tazpit News Agency: “I felt we were going back 75 years, losing our hold on the land. The Arabs no longer feel the need to hide their murderous tendencies, announcing out loud that they wish to destroy us.”