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Tag: Lawsuits (1-10 of 17)

Frank Ocean sued by Chipotle, releases song with Diplo and former Clash members [UPDATED]

Well, this might not be the Channel Orange followup we’ve been waiting for. On Friday, burrito emporium Chipotle sued Frank Ocean for backing out on a deal to deliver a song for an advertising campaign. The suit alleges that Chipotle paid Ocean $212,500 to record a new version of “Pure Imagination,” the song made famous in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, for an ad benefiting the restaurant chain’s sustainable farming program. (Several artists, including Willie Nelson, have contributed to the program in the past.) The track was due back in August, but on the day that Ocean was supposed to deliver the tune, he told Chipotle he would not be delivering. READ FULL STORY

'American Idol' lawsuit claims Sony owes Kelly, Carrie, others royalties

As a wise old prophet once said, music makes the people come together. But an even older, even wiser prophet warns us that money is the root of all evil.

All of which is a roundabout way of saying that American Idol‘s house record label 19 Recordings is suing Sony Music for allegedly cheating its artists — including Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Clay Aiken, and plenty of others you barely remember — out of royalties worth millions of dollars.

“We did not want to have to file this lawsuit, but Sony left us no choice, so this became necessary to protect our artists. Our complaint lays out the claims in great detail,” says Jason Morey, 19 Entertainment’s Worldwide Head of Music, in a statement. “Everything we have to say about the case is set forth in it.”

The suit focuses mainly on issues of accounting. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the complaint accuses Sony of treating master recordings streamed on services such as Spotify as “sales” or “distributions” rather than “broadcasts” or “transmissions,” allowing the company to pay significantly less than it should under the terms of its recording agreements. It also alleges that Sony has improperly deducted money spent on TV advertising and music videos and that it has not paid proper royalties on compilation albums — attempting “to state compilation albums are not albums” — among other things. It seeks at least $10 million in damages.

When reached by EW, Sony declined to comment on the suit.

Prince drops $22 million lawsuit against fans online

Prince is officially dropping a $22 million lawsuit against members of a Facebook group and a Blogspot account, mere days after he announced he would be going after the fans for posting links to copyrighted material of his live performances. The singer announced late Tuesday night that he would no longer be pressing charges against the fans who have since removed the links in question.


Prince slaps fans, Facebook users with $22 million lawsuit for posting bootleg videos

UPDATE (Jan. 29, 2014): Prince drops lawsuit after online videos are removed

ORIGINAL POST: Prince, that well-documented hater of the internet, is at it again.

The legendary Minnesota luddite’s latest volley against the ones-and-zeroes comes in the form of a lawsuit filed against a group of online fans who’ve posted unauthorized Prince concert videos from the ’80s and beyond on Facebook and other places online.


Judge nixes 50 Cent's bid to toss video lawsuit

50 Cent has lost a bid to end a Florida woman’s lawsuit over a sex video posted online with him edited into it as a wig-wearing narrator.

A New York judge rebuffed the rapper’s request to dismiss Lastonia Leviston’s claim in a ruling made public Thursday. Lawyers for both sides haven’t returned calls seeking comment. READ FULL STORY

Kanye West sued for 'Bound 2' sample


The singer whose 1971 song is sampled on Kanye West’s track “Bound 2″ is suing the rapper for using it without permission. Ricky Spicer, 56, filed suit in Manhattan Supreme Court on Monday, demanding that West either pay him for the misappropriated use of the sample or cease and desist.

Spicer was part of the Cleveland-based teen R&B-soul group Ponderossa Twins Plus One. (Spicer was the Plus One, alongside the Gardner and Pelham twins.) They never became as big as the Jackson 5, and despite a few minor hits, they were finished by 1975. But their debut 1971 album, 2+2+1 = Ponderossa Twins Plus One, featured the song “Bound,” which includes 12-year-old Spicer’s “fallin’ in love” refrain.

“Mr. Spicer’s voice is sampled exactly as he recorded it,” claims the suit, which also names West’s record labels Roc-A-Fella Records, Universal Music Group, Island Def-Jam Music and Rhino Entertainment as defendants.

There’s no denying that “Bound” is part of Kanye’s hit song, but he clearly believes he acquired the right to the tune properly, via All Platinum Records. (Why else would he title his song “Bound 2″?) But there is some debate about the song’s proper ownership, according to a recent story in the Cleveland Challenger. In his lawsuit, Spicer claims that he has a copyright “in the sound recording of his voice in the song.”

West’s reps did you immediately respond to EW’s request for comment. Click below to hear both songs.

Beastie Boys sue GoldieBlox for copyright infringement over 'Girls' video

And the Beastie Boys vs. GoldieBlox saga continues.

After GoldieBlox, a toy company, created a video about female empowerment set to a lyrically altered version of Beastie Boy’s “Girls,” the company took a preventative action in suing the band in November. GoldieBlox claimed that including the song in their video fell under “fair use.”

The Beastie Boys then responded in an open letter, saying: “As creative as it is, make no mistake, your video is an advertisement that is designed to sell a product, and long ago, we made a conscious decision not to permit our music and/or name to be used in product ads. When we tried to simply ask how and why our song ‘Girls’ had been used in your ad without our permission, YOU sued US.”

GoldieBlox quickly removed the video and wrote an open letter of its own, claiming, in part: “Our hearts sank last week when your lawyers called us with threats that we took very seriously. As a small company, we had no choice but to stand up for ourselves. We did so sincerely hoping we could come to a peaceful settlement with you.”

However, it seems that didn’t satisfy the Beastie Boys as they have now filed a lawsuit of their own. The lawsuit claims copyright infringement and states, “GoldieBlox has engaged in the systematic infringement of intellectual property from numerous popular music groups, including Beastie Boys.” Among that list of music groups, the lawsuit makes mention of Queen, Daft Punk, Kaskade, Avicii, and more.

Read the lawsuit here.

Marvin Gaye's children sue over Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines'

Two of Marvin Gaye’s children have countersued Robin Thicke and his collaborators on the hit “Blurred Lines” for copyright infringement.

The suit filed Wednesday in a Los Angeles federal court accuses Thicke, producer Pharrell, and rapper T.I. of copying Gaye’s hit “Got to Give It Up.”

Nona Marvisa Gaye and Frankie Christian Gaye also accused music company EMI of failing to pursue a copyright infringement claim and trying to intimidate Gaye’s children from filing a lawsuit.

EMI is owned by Sony Music Entertainment, which didn’t immediately return a phone message seeking comment.

Thicke asked a federal judge
in August to rule that his song didn’t copy “Got to Give It Up.” Thicke’s attorney Howard King says the Gayes’ decision to sue EMI shows the family doesn’t have the authority to pursue claims against his client.

Robin Thicke sues for pre-emptive copyright protection of 'Blurred Lines'

With apologies to Miley Cyrus, Daft Punk, and Justin Timberlake, Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” is undoubtedly the song that will define the summer of 2013. So naturally, with the sort of exposure and success it has scored, it has come under fire from people trying to get a piece of the action.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Thicke (along with track cohorts Pharrell Williams and T.I.) filed a suit in federal court in California against both the family of Marvin Gaye and a publishing company that holds the rights to some of Funkadelic’s compositions. The reason? Both of those parties have claimed that “Blurred Lines” borrows from their own work, and thus they should be entitled to royalties.

The Gaye family’s claim is especially absurd, as they claim that “Blurred Lines” feels and sounds the same as Gaye’s “Got To Give It Up,” and that, according to the suit, “the Gaye defendants are claiming ownership of an entire genre, as opposed to a specific work.”

Meanwhile, Bridgeport Music says that “Blurred Lines” sounds too much like Funkadelic’s “Sexy Ways.” Both parties have threatened litigation if they aren’t paid, which is why Thicke, Williams, and T.I. have filed suit in order to get the matter settled immediately.

Give a listen to “Blurred Lines,” Gaye’s “Got to Give It Up,” and Funkadelic’s “Sexy Ways” below.  READ FULL STORY

Jenni Rivera's company hit with plane crash lawsuit

Relatives of four passengers killed last month with Jenni Rivera in a plane crash in Mexico filed a lawsuit against Rivera’s company Thursday alleging the singer was negligent when she hired a faulty Learjet 25.

The civil lawsuit filed in a Los Angeles court seeks unspecified financial compensation from Jenni Rivera Enterprises. It claims Rivera picked the aircraft owned by Las Vegas-based Starwood Management and should have known the state of the plane and the pilots’ status.

“There are a lot of doubts about why Jenni Rivera chose that aerial clunker,” said attorney Vance Owen, of Kiel & Larson, who represents the plaintiffs.

Rivera’s publicist, Arturo Rivera, her makeup artist, Jacob Yebale, her stylist, Jorge Sanchez, her lawyer, Mario Macias, and the two pilots were among the seven people killed when the aircraft crashed Dec. 9 in northern Mexico. READ FULL STORY

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