Yup. You read right. will.i.am uploaded a “new” song on his VEVO yesterday titled, “Let’s Go” which features Chris Brown. After it was officially released, it garnered attention from several music outlets, praising will.i.am for his “good work”. One even went on to say:
will.i.am has crafted hits with Britney Spears and Justin Bieber. Now the leader of the Black Eyed Peas pumps up the volume with Chris Brown on “Let’s Go”, one of the many collaborations off his solo album, “#willpower”, due April 23.
Breezy encourages listeners to “get crazy,” while will raps over the electro-dance beat that will have you pumping your fist.
What? It’ll be featured off his solo album? Sure thing, go right ahead. Except, correct us if we’re wrong but shouldn’t solo albums especially highlight your own work? If an artiste were to sample an “electro-dance beat”, shouldn’t it be cleared by the original producer/DJ/artiste or at least the label in which owns the rights to the said sample?
Case at hand:
Familiar “electro-dance beat”, huh?
It appears that will.i.am have conveniently stolen from two of the world’s Top 100 DJs, Mat Zo and Arty. The original track from which will.i.am nicked a sample from is called, “Rebound“, released in 2011 under DJ/producer trio Above & Beyond‘s Anjunabeats label. Apparently, Mat Zo and Arty were never informed of “Let’s Go”, neither did they allow will.i.am to use their work nor was it ever cleared with Anjunabeats.
Arty took it to Twitter to describe his disbelief late yesterday saying:
On the other hand, will.i.am has come out with his side of the story about the apparent song theft, saying, “You can’t steal if you credited somebody”:
Anjunabeats has issued a short statement regarding the infringement of copyright on the will.i.am track “Let’s Go” featuring Chris Brown. Here it is in full:
Anjunabeats is the record label behind Arty and Mat Zo and owns the master recording rights to their collaboration “Rebound.” Mat Zo and Arty have been important members of the Anjunabeats family for a number of years and “Rebound” was one of the label’s most popular releases in 2011.
As has been widely reported, a large section of “Rebound” was sampled on Will.i.am’s track “Let’s Go featuring Chris Brown” and this took place without the permission of Anjunabeats or Arty & Mat Zo.
Although Arty (but not Mat Zo) was credited in the sleeve notes, this is not the same as obtaining permission. To present someone else’s work as your own, you need to seek permission, agree terms and file paperwork, which has not happened in this case.
We’ve remained silent on this issue until now but as a record label it is our obligation to protect our artists’ interests and we felt it was necessary to respond to some of the inaccuracies that have been reported following Will.i.am’s recent comments to Associated Press.
Uh oh. Lawsuit now? Yes?