Music Mondays – Nicki Minaj denies copyright infringement in Tracy Chapman lawsuit

Nicki Minaj has formally denied committing copyright infringement in response to Tracy Chapman’s October 2018 lawsuit. Chapman claims that Minaj’s unreleased Nas collaboration “Sorry,” which interpolates the songwriter’s 1988 cut “Baby Can I Hold You,” uses her material without permission.

As The Blast and Pitchfork report, Minaj filed a formal response to the suit in California federal court on February 22nd. In the documents, she asserts that the interpolation is protected by the fair use doctrine, adding that Chapman “has not properly registered her claim to the copyright in the Composition [‘Baby Can I Hold You’].” Therefore, she claims, Chapman does not own the “copyright in issue and therefore lacks standing to bring the claims alleged in the Complaint” and is not entitled to damages.

New York DJ Funkmaster Flex premiered “Sorry” on radio station Hot 97 in August 2018. Though the song was never officially released, audio from the broadcast still exists online. Chapman is seeking damages and aiming to stop Minaj from releasing the song.

– Excerpt from an article written by Ryan Reed for Rolling Stone. Find the full article here

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