Back in June, it was revealed that Iron Maiden‘s Steve Harris and Dave Murray and their publishing company Imagem London Limited were being sued by former singer Dennis Willcock over songwriting credits. Now, Ham & High are reporting that the band have responded to the dispute.
Attorney Barry McKay filed a copyright dispute on behalf of Willcock who claimed he wrote lyrics for “Prowler“, “Charlotte The Harlot“, “Phantom Of The Opera” and “Iron Maiden“ back in 1977, and that he also co-wrote “Prodigal Son” with Harris. Iron Maiden have since said that Harris was the one that wrote the lyrics in question.
The group did admit that there is a songwriting credits error on “Charlotte The Harlot,” but made it clear that Harris’ name was missing and that he should be credited along with Murray, not Willcock. Documents reportedly state that “The lyrics [for the song] were written by Mr. Harris in or around 1977 to accompany music written by Mr. Murray, who had joined Iron Maiden in late 1976.”
The band also admitted that Willcock changed three words in “Prowler” and two words in “Charlotte The Harlot,” but they did question whether or not Willcock could even remember his contributions:
“[He] was, when he was a member of Iron Maiden, notorious for forgetting lyrics for the band’s songs, or missing out words or singing the wrong words. He … even had to sing from lyric sheets at live performances. Accordingly, it is implausible that Mr. Wilcock can now remember lyrics he allegedly wrote some 40 years ago.”
McKay reportedly responded by saying he can’t wait to go to court.