Sweet Child O’ Mine: Was it ‘borrowed’ from an Australian band?

WASHINGTON — Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child O’ Mine” was an unquestionable hit — what is being questioned is whether it was ripped-off from a 1981 song by an Australian band.

After an article posted on the Australian website MaxTV.com pointed out similarities between the 1987 hit from GN’R and a lesser known 1981 song by Australian Crawl, the singer of the Australian group is weighing in.

“I want to be very careful about what I say, but reckon it may not be inconceivable that there may be some similarities between the two songs,” Australian Crawl vocalist and co-writer of “Unpublished Critics” James Reyne told MaxTV.com.

Reyne also told the Daily Mail that he didn’t “pay that much attention,” to the Guns N’ Roses song when it was released.

While he jokingly said “as the song’s co-writer I might stand to benefit,” he also told the Daily Mail “I’m not about to take on the might of the Guns N’ Roses lawyers.”

Slash, whose guitar riff is the defining riff on the Guns N’ Roses song, has said they came up with the song during a jam session in 1986.

Compare the songs for yourself:

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a reporter at WTOP since 1997. Through the years, Neal has covered many of the crimes and trials that have gripped the region. Neal's been pleased to receive awards over the years for hard news, feature reporting, use of sound and sports.

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