Lawsuit Filed Against Kanye West Over Sample Used on Donda 2

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Photo:  Roy Rochlin (Getty Images)
Photo: Roy Rochlin (Getty Images)

Wake up Mr. West! You’re getting sued again!

Months after its release, issues are still popping up for Kanye West’s latest album, Donda 2. West is facing an infringement lawsuit over the unauthorized use of a sample, according to Billboard.

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In a complaint filed in U.S. District Court in New York on Wednesday, West is being accused of sampling Marshall Jefferson’s 1986 house track “Move Your Body” without gaining permission or giving compensation. The lawsuit claims Ye sampled the song on “Flowers” at least 22 times throughout the beat.

Want to hear the song? Too bad because Donda 2 is only available if you buy a stem player from the website, which is worth $200.

At this point, West should be used to these lawsuits, earlier this year he was sued by a Texas Pastor for sampling his sermon on the Donda track “Come to Life.” In 2021, the Sunday Service choir sued Mr. West for mistreatment and unpaid wages that totaled  $30 million. Two years ago, the Chicago rapper was sued by background actors and hairstylists who worked on his Nebuchadnezzar live opera for not being paid on time, not being paid the correct amount or not being paid at all.

From Billboard:

Filed by attorneys Christine Lepera and Bradley J. Mullins of the firm Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp, the complaint was brought by Jefferson’s publisher Ultra International Music Publishing. Jefferson both wrote and performed “Move Your Body,” which first became a hit on the club scene in Jefferson’s native Chicago before being officially released by Trax Records in 1986. The song peaked at No. 34 on Billboard’s Dance Singles Sales chart in August of that year.

Also named as defendants in the suit are Alex Klein, who co-created the Stem Player – the MP3 device on which Ye exclusively released Donda 2 – along with Klein’s company Kano Computing Limited and unnamed “Does 1-10.” As cited in the complaint, the Stem Player allows users “to isolate so-called ‘stems’ and then ‘customize’ songs by altering how those stems are used,” with the “Move Your Body” sample being one of the “stems” users can isolate with the device.

West and his representatives admitted to Jefferson’s representatives and publisher, Ultra International Music Publishing (UIMP), that they knowingly sampled “Move Your Body” on the song “Flower” without the proper authorization and compensation, according to Billboard.

So Kanye knows what he did? How Kanye of him.

Also in the suit, Jefferson’s representatives claimed that Kanye is a hypocrite for being outspoken for artists rights, but continuing to sample other artists’ work without the proper authorization.

More from Billboard:

UIMP is asking for “a preliminary and permanent injunction enjoining and restraining Defendants” and their associates from continuing to infringe “Move Your Body”; profits and damages in an amount to be determined at trial or, alternatively, maximum statutory damages of $150,000 per infringement; attorneys’ fees and full costs of bringing the suit; and prejudgment interest.