Kanye West is reportedly being sued for failing to clear the sample on his Yeezus single, “Bound 2”.
Ricky Spicer, 56, was a member of the teen R&B group Ponderossa Twins Plus One, who released the song “Bound” in 1971 on their album 2+2+1. Spicer recorded the hook that appears on West’s version when he was just 12 years old.
He filed a lawsuit in Manhattan Supreme Court on Monday (Dec. 23), and wants to be immediately or have the song pulled. He says he has a copyright “in the sound recording of his voice in the song,” and claims that he was never contacted by West or his representatives to gain permission or clear the sample.
“Mr. Spicer’s voice is sampled exactly as he recorded it,” the suit claims.
Despite Spicer’s claims, West may have cleared the song through another company. According to the Cleveland Challenger, Chuck Brown, Sr. says he owns the original song’s publishing through one of several labels he owned.
“Brown’s Saru Records was the parent company for Horoscope Records and Chuck Brown Music that owns everything from the name Ponderosa Twins Plus One to the songs they performed. On the album, ‘Bound’ is listed on Brown’s Horoscope label,” writes the paper.
The paper reported in June that Brown had not been paid for the sample either. At the time, he blamed the confusion on the late Joseph Robinson, Jr. and Sylvia Robinson, who once distributed his records through their companies Robinson Music Group and Gambi Music — both of which are listed as production credits on West’s “Bound 2.”