Jack White, the former frontman of the White Stripes, has won many things in his career, including Grammys and MTV Video Music Awards. But this week, he added another, somewhat grander, title to the list: Eurovision winner.
Well, sort of.
White, 43, was added to the list of composers of Netta Barzilai’s “Toy,” an infectious pop anthem about female empowerment, accompanied by a chicken dance, that won the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest for Israel.
“Toy” was widely praised for bringing a fresh direction to the contest. The Guardian said it “reignited Girl Power for the #MeToo generation.”
But some pointed out that its chorus had a certain resemblance to the White Stripes’ “Seven Nation Army,” whose main riff is widely used in sports chants.
“Let’s hope Jack White doesn’t hear this song before the Eurovision Song Contest” Ben Shalev, the music critic for Haaretz, wrote last March. “He may sue.”
In June, weeks after the contest in Lisbon, Universal Music Group wrote to Doron Medalie and Stav Beger, the writers credited for “Toy,” asking them about the resemblance. An agreement has now been reached, according to Haaretz, and White was added to the song’s credits.
White did not respond to a request for comment on Thursday. Amnon Szpektor, who was head of media for Israel’s entry in 2018, said the agreement included a confidentiality clause, and so neither Medalie nor Beger could comment.
Netta was also unavailable, he said.
“That’s a hole she would not want to fall in,” he added.
This year’s Eurovision is scheduled to be held in Tel Aviv in May, and there are already calls for a boycott from some supporters of Palestinians, especially members backers of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, known as B.D.S.