Cut the Damn Check!! Jay Z & Kanye West Settles Federal Lawsuit

| March 12, 2012 | 0 Comments

Jay-Z and Kanye West have settled a federal lawsuit by soul singer Syl Johnson, who claimed that the duo used an unauthorized sample of his song “Different Strokes” on “The Joy,” a track on the deluxe version of their album Watch the Throne.

According to Johnson, West had attempted to clear the sample for his 2010 record My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, but could not get the deal ready in time for its release and ended up putting the track on Throne without his permission, proper credit or payment. The details of West and Jay-Z’s settlement with Johnson have not been made public, though legal papers filed in Illinois last week indicate that the suit has been dismissed.

Johnson has pursued previous legal action against rappers. His $29 million lawsuit against Cypress Hill was dismissed in 2008 on the technicality that sound recordings made before February 15, 1972 are not subject to copyright protection under the Copyright Act. The singer later sued his legal team for malpractice after the ruling was upheld by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Recently rapper Tyga had his music removed from shelves for failure to get a sample cleared. A word to the wise, make sure you hire competent legal advisers  before you think to release music or any work that is protected by Federal law.

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