In addition to dodging divorce rumors (and Solange), Jay-Z‘s had to tackle his share of legal troubles this year as well. First there was the $600 million lawsuit over the Brooklyn Nets logo, which is still unresolved. This was quickly followed by extortion, when engineer Chauncey Mahan stole the master recordings for four years worth of work valued at $15 million. Mahan then ordered Jay-Z’s label Roc Nation to pay him $100,000 and was quickly arrested. And how could we forget the utterly bizarre accusation of California prison inmate Richard Dupree, who claims that Jay-Z, Beyonce, Chris Brown, and Rihanna stole over 3,000 songs from him during his incarceration. (In conjunction with the CIA and the FBI… of course.)
Now Jay-Z is facing yet another lawsuit, along with fellow artists Kanye West and Frank Ocean, that concerns “Made in America” off of 2011′s Watch the Throne. New York-based musician Joel McDonald claims the trio lifted the track’s concept from a song he wrote in 2010 of the same name. He is suing them for $3 million in damages.
This is not the first lawsuit that the super stars have faced in regards to their collaborative album either. Back in March of 2012, they settled out of court with Sly Johnson for an undisclosed amount. Johnson accused the two hip-hop stars of sampling his song “Different Strokes” for Watch the Throne‘s “Joy” without permission.
Kanye West was also in the news earlier this month in regards to entirely DIFFERENT shady sampling behavior. In an interview with Pitchfork, Richard D. James of Aphex Twin mentioned that West had sampled his track “Avril 14″ for My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy‘s “Blame Game” without reimbursing him. James made no mention of taking legal action against West. Musician Robert Fripp was also quite outspoken about West’s sample of King Crimson’s “21st Century Schizoid Man” on monster single “Power.”
Accusations and settlements and lawyers, oh my.
Watch Johnson’s video for “Made in America” below and make your own judgment about Hov and Ye’s most recent legal concerns.