All of a sudden… why now? What made her suddenly pop out and claim this? Hmm. Who knows. The only thing I get when I google Katie Farrah Sopher (aside from a million other articles about this suing business) is a PDF, documenting a Tower Hamlets tenancy agreement with her, dated 2002. Weird? Yes, weird.

But anyway yeah this is the news that Katie Farrah Sopher, a songwriter of sorts if we are to believe everything we read, is suing Disclosure, Sam Smith, AlunaGeorge and Eliza Doolittle over some song lyrics that she is claiming to have written. This was reported in the Mail On Sunday.

Her story is that she was in a "toxic" relationship with a guy called Sean Sawyers and that she wrote songs based on her life, much of which took inspiration from her violent now-ex-boyfriend, with whom she split 2009. She claims that he then stole a songbook and sold it on to, well, whoever, where it's now been the inspiration for a few big songs (allegedly).

She wants £200,000 (I'd ask for more) in damages for lyrics to the songs 'Latch', 'You & Me', 'White Noise' and the AlunaGeorge track 'Attracting Flies'. I looked through the lyrics of the songs and, whilst there is the possibility of them being wholly unrelated, there are some similarities; the inklings of describing a one-sided and indeed "toxic" relationship.

Here is my Top Secret Eng. Lit. Analysis:


  • 'Latch'
  • Moves from "You lift my heart up when the rest of me is down" to "…hold me tight within your clutch" and "How do you do it? You got me losing every breath / What did you give me to make my heart bleed out my chest?" – slightly negative. And the chorus, the use of the word "shackled" is really odd, and would definitely suit a relationship that neither person wants to be in; imagery of locks and chains. Also remember 'latch' is not just a verb – lots of doors have a latch in their lock mechanism.

  • 'You & Me'
  • More imagery of locks: "You keep me locked up underground" and also "You got my secret combination." Also speaks about her heart being "tarnished". Then there's, "Rolling with the punches / So they won’t get inside our happiness" – almost as if she puts up with violence, rolls with it, so as not to upset the relationship; "You know you always draw more blood, I bleed" is the last line of the verse and things begin to feel almost sado-masochistic. At the end of the song, "And you stashed my heart / Somewhere in the dark" – more imagery of secrets, hiding, darkness.

  • 'White Noise'
  • Surprisingly full of stuff. Starts simple "I know you're smart" – another way to say manipulative, perhaps. Why'd you say that in a song otherwise? There's the refrain, "Lately I've been thinking if you wanna get tough, then let's play rough," which hints at violence, and also includes the line "I don't need you, telling me how to be, telling me how to be" – this "you" (Sawyers?) seems controlling. The chorus is quite obvious: "I'm hearing static, you're like an automatic / You just wanna keep me on repeat and hear me crying." An automatic what though? Often if you say "automatic" on its own like that it means automatic gun (of some sort), suggesting torrents of verbal abuse that seem to be regular, if she is crying on repeat. "Only you can look at me the way you do / You always tint me tint me black and blue / Such a shame, you frame me with such disdain / You got me washed out, washed out colour drained." This is more telling than anything; even the way he looks at her feels as if she's "black and blue" (beaten up); but at the same time she feels totally drained, a monochrome person.

  • 'Attracting Flies'
  • The boot's on the other foot with this one, feels as if she's finally had enough. "I hear you shout, I'm not stepping out" – she won't rise to him being angry. But it sounds like he gets really angry: "And you can go off the rails / And you can cry your eyes out," with the way it's put suggesting she isn't surprised by it; that it's a regular occurrence. Indeed, she says "Who needs the drama" and asks "Who said you had to bleed?" – more blood imagery. There's sarcasm next: "I'm excited / Come on, surprise me, sweep me off my feet" – suggesting that she's never been swept off her feet by him, hinting again at the lack of romance (and excess of trouble) in this relationship. And then of course: "How'd you think it felt when you stuck the knife in / You know my heart died and you had me aching." He's hurt her in the past. But it's a very bluntly violent way of saying so.


In conclusion: there is probably enough there for a case, but it could just be that Katie Farrah Sopher has done what I've just done and thought, "There is probably enough there for a case…!" And made it all up. But then again, maybe that is the cynicism of our age, that we believe the established and disregard the unknown outsider. Sean Sawyers, the ex-boyfriend in question, has denied everything and says he's never seen the songbook; but if he really is the Mr. Sawyers who inspired the songs above, then that's exactly the kind of thing he would say. No?

Disclosure, Sam Smith, AlunaGeorge and Eliza Doolittle have yet to comment. To be fair, even if they did come from an outside source – another songwriter – you wouldn't really think twice about where they got the lyrics from, would you?

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