Billy Corgan Names The SP Songs Ripped Off From Rush And The Who

It is common for artists to take a piece of someone else’s work and incorporate it into their own musical effort. They stick to their own tune while also carrying their influences with them. As Billy Corgan revealed during a recent conversation with Rick Beato, two Smashing Pumpkins songs bear a trace of Rush and the Who.

“People would always say like, ‘Your music is depressing’ or something,” Corgan said about the criticisms against their music. “We don’t think of our music as depressing. We understand why people think, but it’s a tone, right? [John] Coltrane playing; I can never say this [is emo]. Is that depressing music? It’s beautiful, it expresses the breath of love and life. It’s a life experience thing.”

The rocker continued, “So, we would think of it more in terms of violence or something like that. There is a certain violence in the way that we play. So, a song like ‘Siva’ would have a particular type of violence that would be more based on taking LSD and listening to Ravi Shankar and mixing it with Black Sabbath or something faster with Sabbath.”

Then, Corgan admitted that their ‘Cherub Rock’ was a rip-off from Rush. Billy noted, “A song like ‘Cherub Rock,’ that’s basically us doing Rush or something. Basically, the beginning of ‘Cherub Rock’ is ripped off from ‘By-Tor and the Snow Dog’ by Rush. It is a straight rip-off Rush, but the backbeat rhythm; we see ‘Cherub Rock’ as a halftime song [sings the song].”

After ‘Cherub Rock,’ Billy Corgan also named the other Smashing Pumpkins song, this time heavily influenced by the Who. The vocalist revealed, “We saw that as the Who. If you listen to the backing track, ‘Tonight Tonight’ without the strings, it is just like the Who. We are just basically doing a poor imitation of the Who.”

So, Billy Corgan disclosed that Smashing Pumpkins’ ‘Cherub Rock’ carried influences from Rush’s ‘By-Tor and the Snow Dog,’ while ‘Tonight Tonight’ was inspired by the Who’s music. Yet, Smashing Pumpkins have always found an original way of putting their music out by integrating diverse elements into their sound.