"Of course, neither Simon nor Garfunkle has been identified as a Nautical Expert"
June 30, 2008 6:57 PM Subscribe
Chief Justice Roberts (mis)quotes Bob Dylan
* in his dissent on Sprint Communications Co. v. APCC Services, Inc.
, making this the first known time that a Supreme Court Opinion has used a "rock song to buttress legal opinion,"
according to Alex B. Long
of the University of Tennessee. Mr. Long knows a thing or two about this**, having authored [Insert Song Lyrics Here]
***, a Washington & Lee Law review Article on the subject of Pop Music in legal writing. The article is funny†, insightful, comprehensive in its musical background††, and surprisingly knowledgeable about good taste in writing.†††
*To be fair, Alex Long misquotes the line as well. For a full performance, see here
** The Top Ten Most Cited Musicians (according to Long's admittedly flawed study) are:
1. Bob Dylan
2. The Beatles
3. Bruce Springsteen
4. Paul Simon
5. Woody Guthrie
6. The Rolling Stones
7. The Grateful Dead
8. Simon & Garfunkle
9. Joni Mitchell
*** This is a link to a site where you may download the pdf. Also, I should mention that this is the priority link, See
† Pro Tip: In legal writing, the footnotes are used not only to exhaustively cite one's sources, but also to provide humor, irreverence, and "off-the-record" personal opinions where they would otherwise not be appropriate. This article is full of both.
†† A fun "mix tape" of a small few of the cited songs:
Cracker, Teen Angst
The New Pornographers, The Laws Have Changed
Ludacris, You's a Ho
Violent Femmes, Add It Up
Elvis Costello, Less Than Zero
Tupac Shakur, Holla if You Hear Me
Elvis Presley, Mystery Train
Chuck Berry, Nadine
The Beatles, Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except for Me and my Monkey
The Kinks, Lola
The Undertones, Teenage Kicks
R.E.M., It's the End of the World as We Know It (and I Feel Fine)
††† If anyone knows how to do proper footnotes on MeFi, please let me know.
Bonus: The "Hum a Few Bar Exam,"
from Prof. Eugene Volokh
of Volokh Conspiracy