After the recent Pharrell/Robin Thicke ruling, similarities between songs will be scrutinized more than ever. In a new interview, R&B producer Jermaine Dupri points out that Ciara’s potentially career-reviving new single “I Bet” is “a complete rip-off” of Usher’s “U Got It Bad,” which Dupri produced. “I’m clear on what I made and I’m clear on how music influences people and I’m clear on chord changes and how people move things. … It might not be as evident as the ‘Blurred Lines’ situation, but I believe the same thing happened to me,” he said. Dupri also says that he is planning on reaching out to Ciara’s label to receive proper credit for the song, though he seems pretty reasonable about the whole situation:
Younger producers like myself and Pharrell, we make records that are influenced by other records that are out there. That’s how hip-hop has always been created — it has some kind of element of something (from) the past. Or sometimes we just take the entire sample and we give the artist the credit for that sample. We’ve all been in a position where it could go like this or we can give the producer the credit.
Here’s the two songs in question:
He also shed some light on his experience with sampling and songs that sounded too similar to another one:
It’s crazy because I’ve tried to get away with records like that, where I was influenced by something, and the record company wouldn’t budge; they wouldn’t put the record out until I got whatever they thought they heard in the song cleared. That’s the most amazing part about this whole case to me period.
Hit-Boy used a Tupac sample [on Mariah Carey’s Me. I Am Mariah … The Elusive Chanteuse] that I couldn’t even hear, and somebody at the label, Def Jam, they found the sample and they were like, ‘This (sample) got to come out.’ That would have put Mariah in a crazy situation and she didn’t even know the sample was on the record. I’m sure now people are really going to really be paying a lot more attention to it.
[Photo by Moses Robinson/Getty.]