Lawyer for Willie Colón offers the Salsa icon’s rebuttal to plagiarism allegation

Trombonist Willie Colón finished giving his sworn statement Saturday to an investigator in response to the allegation he plagiarized an early 1970s song, El Comercio reported. And then it was his lawyer’s turn to make a statement.

Appearing on cable news station Canal N, Óscar Arenas made the counter-charge that it was Peruvian composer Walter Fuentes who copied “Llegó la Banda” from the Bronx-born founding father of Salsa, and not the other way around.

Fuentes contends he registered the song with the Peruvian Association of Authors and Composers (APDAYC) on Sept. 13, 1973, four months before Colón released his version in the United States. But Arenas produced what he said was a document showing that Fania Records had sent out the order for the LP jacket on May 31, 1973, nearly four months earlier.

“So, the intellectual authorship, the artistic parenthood for this song belongs to Mr. Willie Colón,” he said.

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  1. They should check with Marty Sheller to see if he has the sheet music used for Colon’s bands; Sheller used to write Colon’s music out for him. He would know exactly when Willie composed the tune, because Willie would have played it for Sheller to arrange it.

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