Legendary house musician Marshall Jefferson is suing Kanye West for sampling his 1986 hit “Move Your Body” without permission.
He claims portions of his song were used at least 22 times on Kanye’s track “Flowers” off Donda 2.
On Wednesday, a complaint was filed by Jefferson’s publisher, Ultra International Music Publishing, at New York’s U.S. District Court.
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“I’ve been sampled thousands of times. There is a right way and a wrong way to go about it,” Jefferson, 62, told Radio 1 Newsbeat. “Getting done by another artist, a Black artist, a fellow Chicagoan without acknowledgment is disappointing.”
The lawsuit states that Kanye and his team previously admitted to sampling while speaking with Jefferson’s representatives. However, it claims the rapper did not take a licence, which would mean Jefferson was paid for using his dance single.
“West advocates for artists’ rights with one hand, yet has no shame in taking away rights from another artist with the other,” the legal document reports.
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An attorney for Ultra International, who owns the rights to Jefferson’s song, says the music publishing company is requesting profits and damages to be determined at a trial or maximum statutory damages of $150,000 per infringement.
The document also states that just one day after Kanye released Donda 2, he earned $2.2M from Stem Player sales, “a handheld device that allows users to isolate and recombine song parts” through which the album was exclusively released.
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Kano Computing Ltd, a British company that helped Kanye develop the player, is also mentioned in the lawsuit but has yet to comment on the claim.
Kanye’s representatives and his label, Universal Music Group, who is not named in the doc, have also yet to comment.
In May, 45-year-old West was sued by a Texas pastor named David Paul Moten for allegedly sampling one of his sermons without permission. Kanye has been sued for two more samples in the past, including those used on his tracks “New Slaves” and “Bound 2”; both were settled out of court.