Nicki Minaj agreed is to pay singer-songwriter, Tracy Chapman, $450,000 over a copyright dispute over the leaked song, “Sorry,” where Minaj sampled from an old Tracy Chapman song. The song was played on the radio by DJ Funkmaster Flex in 2018, and then Chapman sued Minaj. Chapman said the leaked song had, “borrowed heavily from the song, “Baby Can I Hold You,” released in 1988.”  Minaj claimed that she “was protected by the “doctrine of ‘fair use’- an exception to copyright law that lets creators borrow copyrighted material under certain conditions.” 

The Hollywood Reporter quoted Chapman as saying of the resolution, “I am glad to have this matter resolved and grateful for this legal outcome which affirms that artists’ rights are protected by law and should be respected by other artists… I was asked in this situation numerous times for permission to use my song; in each instance, politely and in a timely manner, I unequivocally said no. Apparently, Ms. Minaj chose not to hear and used my composition despite my clear and express intentions.” She added, “This lawsuit was a last report — pursued in an effort to defend myself and my work and to seek protection for the creative enterprise and expression of songwriters and independent publishers like myself.”  

– Excerpt from an article for Have. by S.M. Walsh. Read the full article here.

 

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