Court After Death: Biggie Being Sued

The late Notorious B.I.G. is being sued for uncleared samples used on his classic 1994 debut

Publishing company Bridgeport Music Inc. and Westbound Records are suing Biggie’s estate, Bad Boy and Universal claiming they never received permission to use the samples of their works to record the songs Ready to Die, Machine Gun Funk and Gimme the Loot.

The songs, which appeared on his quadruple platinum debut in 1994, will be the subject of a copyright infringement suit headed to court in March in Nashville, TN. Both sides squared off last week in a court session before U.S. District Court Magistrate Joe Brown on a defense motion to dismiss some legal claims before trial.

“They have taken Westbound’s and Bridgeport’s music; they included the music in their music and pawned it off as one of their own,” Richard Busch, the two companies’ attorney, told the judge.

Bridgeport and Westbound contend that B.I.G.’s recordings of Ready to Die and Gimme the Loot illegally used copies of Singing in the Morning by the Ohio Players.

They claim Machine Gun Funk uses Up for the Down Stroke by the Horny Horns, for which Bridgeport owns only the copyright for the composition. Bad Boy’s attorney claims they had the proper licenses to record the songs.

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