Drake, an acclaimed Canadian rapper, has been sued by Ghanaian hip-hop legend Michael Elliot Darko aka Obrafour for unauthorized sampling of his song.
Drake’s 2022 album Honestly, Nevermind featured the track Calling My Name, which is a sample of Obrafour’s 2003 remix of Oye Ohene.
The Ghanaian musician is suing Drake in a New York court, claiming that Drake violated his copyright by sampling his song without his permission.
Read the court documents; “Defendants published the infringing work on June 17, 2022, although a representative of one or more defendants had previously contacted Obrafour to obtain Obrafour’s permission to use the copyrighted work in the infringing work.”
“He never gave the defendants permission to use the copyrighted work, and the infringing work was published just days later.”
Obrafour alleges that the ‘Hotline Bling’ hitmaker and other defendants in the lawsuit have received substantial monetary rewards from sales of the song since it was first released.
Obrafour demands damages
The Ghanaian musician is therefore demanding, among other things, damages in the amount of $10,000,000 (ten million dollars).
“So far, in just 304 days since publication, the infringing work has been streamed over 4.1 million times on YouTube, over 47,442,160 times on Spotify and tens of millions times on Apple Music.
“In addition to generating massive amounts of global streams and sales across multiple platforms, the infringing work was also exploited by the defendants in other ways, including live performances.” added the document.
He is also applying for a temporary injunction “To enable defendants and their agents, employees, officers, attorneys, successors, licensees, partners and assigns and all persons acting jointly or jointly with any or any of them to cease, directly or indirectly, to infringe and cause, to facilitate, encourage, encourage, induce and/or participate in the infringement of Obrafour’s rights protected by copyright law.”
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