Nicki Minaj to pay $450,000 to Tracy Chapman over a copyright infringement dispute 01-08-2021
Nicki Minaj has agreed to pay singer Tracy Chapman $579,000 over a copyright dispute dating back to 2018.
The rapper sampled Chapman’s 1988 song Baby Can I Hold You in her track Sorry which was never officially released, but was leaked to a popular New York DJ who played the song on the radio and shared it to his social media accounts.
Court documents revealed that Chapman and her team have accepted the terms of an out-of-court settlement and will no longer head for the trial that was scheduled for later this year.
“We settled for one reason only. It would have cost us more to go to trial,” an attorney for Minaj told Pitchfork.
Minaj and her team approached Chapman for permission to use the song in her album Queen but the request was rejected as Chapman is reportedly on a list of artists who do not give the rights to use their work.
“I’m torn, y’all help,” Minaj tweeted in 2018.
“Tracy Chapman, can you please hit me. omg for the love of #Queen.”
Chapman has since said in a statement that she’s pleased the matter is over.
“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,” Chapman said.
“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.”
Chapman’s lawyer John Gatti added that the move would work to protect the rights of all artists.
“I respect Tracy’s principles and appreciate her successful efforts to protect artists’ rights. I couldn’t be happier with the outcome and for the statement this makes on behalf of Tracy and indeed, all artists’ rights,” Gatti said.