Jazz Band Claim Rappers Plagiarised “Nearly Every Song” In Their Catalogue In $100m Lawsuit

Paul Batiste, member of the famed New Orleans jazz outfit Batiste Brothers Band and highly regarded virtuoso, has filed a lawsuit that would have to be breaking some sort of record against several rappers and just about ever major company in the rap game. Batiste is seeking a cool $100 million citing the parties “wrongfully copied nearly every song” in their back catalogue.

Lawyers representing Batiste filed their lawsuit last week which names rappers T-Pain, Rick Ross, DJ Khaled, Ace Hood and Pitbull as those in the wrong as well as a horde of record labels associated with them including Cash Money, Fueled By Ramen, RCA Records, Universal, Sony/ATV, Def Jam, Zomba, WB Music and EMI Blackwood. The documents claim that all of the aforementioned “have released an immense number of songs infringing upon [Batiste’s] catalogue … poach[ing] beats, lyrics, melodies and chords”.

It doesn’t end there either, with Batiste demanding blood over song titles. The lawsuit also claims some defendants copied song titles, pointing out four particular tracks including Freeze, Download, Overtime, and Boom which are either a direct copy, or “strikingly similar” to Batiste tracks Freeze, Download My Love, Overtime and Bam There You Have It.

Batiste has spent much of the past 25 years protecting his music, lodging similar suits against several different groups such as PM Dawn, Miller Beer and the Rebirth Brass Band, all of which were settled out of court. Taking to his website, Batiste explained:

“Lawsuits are not fun. The litigations took a toll and frustrated our efforts to grow in the music industry…They take up all your time and the results are sometimes little, but we had no choice but to claim what is ours.”

Self-described as “a major influence on the current New Orleans jazz scene”, the Batiste family are the Kennedys of the New Orleans music scene. Family members have been involved with high profile acts such as George Clinton and Prince, however as almost none of the Batiste Brothers Band music has made it online, it’s difficult to assess the claims for yourself.

(Via Tone Deaf)

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