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Wisconsin man wins court fight over polka song (UPDATE)

Polka musician Ray Rubenzer performs at The Webb in Cameron, Wis., in 2005. Rubenzer, of Chippewa Falls, won a federal copyright infringement lawsuit against his ex-wife and her current husband. (AP File Photo/Eau Claire Leader-Telegram, Dan Reiland)

CHIPPEWA FALLS, Wis. (AP) – A Chippewa Falls polka musician has won a court battle involving his ex-wife and her new husband, who he accuses of stealing one of his most popular tunes.

Ray Rubenzer filed a federal copyright-infringement lawsuit in June. He said he wrote and copyrighted “Yodelin’ Boy Polka” and performed it for years with his wife, Lois.

The pair later divorced and his ex-wife and her new husband David Melgaard recorded “C’mon and Sing.” Rubenzer claimed it was really “Yodelin’ Boy Polka” with different lyrics.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports they’ve entered into a consent judgment that requires the Melgaards to pay Rubenzer $25,000, give him all recordings of “C’mon and Sing” and acknowledge Rubenzer’s right, title and license to the song.

The Melgaards’ attorney, Michael Happe, says they settled because they wanted to get Rubenzer out of their lives and it also saves them future litigation costs.

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