// John Lewis at centre of row for copying arrangement of an art-folk song for its Christmas ad
// Art-folk duo The Portraits accused John Lewis of replicating their Together in Electric Dreams
// The Portraits said they sent their 2020 cover of the song to the retailer but received no response
John Lewis has reportedly been accused of copying the arrangement of an art-folk song for its latest Christmas advert.
The department store chain was criticised by Alt-folk duo The Portraits for replicating their 1985 electro-pop classic Together in Electric Dreams.
The Portraits said they sent their 2020 cover of the song to the retailer – then found the “feeling” replicated, The Guardian reported.
John Lewis has denied all allegations that it lifted the arrangement to Philip Oakey and Georgio Moroder’s Together in Electric Dreams.
The ad tells the story of a friendship between a boy and an alien visitor, set to a soundtrack of a slowed down version of Together in Electric Dreams, with vocals by 20-year-old singer Lola Young.
However, a similar version of the song was released by the Portraits – Jeremy and Lorraine Millington – as a charity single last Christmas.
The Portraits said they contacted John Lewis in March this year to ask if their arrangement of Together in Electric Dreams would work for the company’s Christmas advert, but received no response.
John Lewis said the person the Portraits addressed their email to left the business in June and was not involved in this year’s Christmas ad campaign.
The Portraits said they don’t want to get into an argument with John Lewis but feel that “justice should be done”.
They have asked that the company “make a donation to both of the charities and acknowledge our work”.