Rapper Kanye West is being sued for allegedly sampling a portion of an incredibly obscure song without obtaining the rights for his international hit ‘Gold Digger.’
On Monday Trena Steward and Lorenzo Pryor filed a civil complaint against West, Roc-A-Fella Records, The Island and Def Jam Music Group for copyright infringement, among other allegations, according to TMZ.
Trena and Lorenzo are the daughter and son of David Pryor, the obscure musician who wrote and sang the song ‘Bumpin Bus Stop’ with his band Thunder & Lightening nearly forty years ago in 1974.
The children each own a quarter of that tune and claim that 13 seconds into Kanye’s chart-topping 2005 hit ‘Gold Digger,’ comes a sampling of their father’s track.
To be specific, the copyright infringement allegedly arises 13 seconds into the song when their father says ‘Get down’ three times, echoing Kanye saying ‘Get down, girl, go head get down’ three times.
Steward and Pryor are seeking $150,000 per copyright infringement, as well as attorney’s fees.
Considering ‘Gold Digger’ sold more than three million copies in the United States alone and tens of millions of copies worldwide, the judgement could be quite expensive if it were to go against the thirty-five year-old rapper and the labels named in the suit.
However, beyond the obscurity of the song ‘Bumpin Bus Stop,’ there’s also the strange fact that the plaintiffs are filing this lawsuit eight years after ‘Gold Digger’ became an international hit.
This is not the first time West has been sued for copyright infringement of lyrics.
In September of 2012, New York record label TufAmerica sued West for using portions of a 1969 song by New Orleans legend Eddie Bo in the Grammy-winning rapper’s hit ‘My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.’
In 2010, West was sued by musician Vincent Peters over a copyright dispute for the hit track ‘Stronger.’
In that case, the court ruled in West’s favor when the rapper’s attorneys referenced the works of Fredrick Nietzche, whose timeless quote ‘that which does not kill us makes us stronger’ is used in the song.
Outside of the legal front, West is expecting his first child with 32 year-old reality star Kim Kardashian in July of this year along with his sixth studio album.
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