Copyright violations are going on all over the place. Katy Perry got hit with a $2.7 million fine for her hit single Dark Horse, and Lizzo is still facing all sorts of accusations about her single Truth Hurts which made her a household name.
Now, Ariana Grande is next in line and being accused of ripping off key elements of her song 7 Rings, one of her biggest singles in a long time. Did Ari really steal her music from someone else, or is this more a case of a lesser-known star trying to cash in?
You can decide.
Ariana, 26, is being accused of stealing lyrics, rhythm, and notes from hip hop artist DOT, who is also 26, apparently. I say “apparently” because he is, uh, not so popular and there is very little information about him online. His song that he believes Ariana stole is called You Need It I Got It.
His Facebook has less than 10k likes, and the video for the song that he is accusing Ari of stealing only has about 46k views as of right now. Those numbers are already inflated from people doing exactly what you’re going to do after you read this, which is search for the video to compare.
We would include the video, but the language is questionable at best, and honestly? It’s not that good of a song.
If you’re familiar with 7 Rings, you’ll know the chorus goes “I want it / I got it / I want it / I got it,” as sort of ode to herself. The whole song is about not needing a man to take care of her – she can do it herself. Which is true, as Ari is worth somewhere in the $80 million range.
DOT has a similar chorus, where he sings “You need it / I got it / You need it / I got it,” in a similar fashion. And while I have never claimed to be an expert, in DOT’s defense, the beat and notes do sound fairly similar to Ari’s song.
“Literally, every single one of the 39 respective notes of 7 Rings is identical with the 39 notes of ‘I Got It’ from a metrical placement perspective,” the lawsuit claims. “Said another way, the rhythm and placement of the notes and lyrics are identical.”
It’s way to soon to tell. DOT’s lawyers say that a forensic musicologist (that’s a thing, folks) compared both songs and found striking similarities, but that won’t be enough in court by itself.
7 Rings is credited with 5 writers, including Grande herself, and 3 producers. It includes an interpolation of My Favorite Things by Rodgers and Hammerstein from The Sound of Music, and both are credited as writers as well because of this.
So far, Grande and her people have had zero comments about the lawsuit.
The suit claims that Ariana made about $10 million from 7 Rings, which is an obscene amount of money.
“Many people made a LOT of money on Josh’s work. And that is wrong … Laws were specifically created to protect artists like Josh from copyright infringement. Those laws were violated and Josh has rights that we are now exercising to right that wrong,” his lawyer said in a statement this week.
Ari is up for a total of five Grammys next week, with two of her nominations being for this song. Talk about tainting your award season.
If this does go to court, which we wouldn’t be surprised to see, you can probably expect a fairly long and drawn-out process. Ari and Josh won’t step into a courtroom next week – it will be months before any resolution happens.
As always, we’ll keep you in the loop.