Oliver Tree Says The Kid Laroi’s New Video Rips Off His Work
The Kid Laroi’s video for new single “Thousand Miles” has been viewed more than 8 million times since premiering on April 22, and a few of those viewers thought they were experiencing déjà vu. Singer-songwriter Oliver Tree tells Rolling Stone that he immediately began hearing from friends who noticed a resemblance to Tree’s own videos for songs including “Miracle Man,” “Hurt,” and the Lil Yachty collab “Asshole.”
The similarities were acute enough that Tree made a comparison video, captioned “They steal that many shots and thought I wouldn’t notice?” on Instagram, that has since gone viral on TikTok. “Kid Laroi’s new video copies multiple shots from my videos,” Tree says in a voice-over. “As an underground indie artist who writes and directs their own videos, I am so sick of big artists ripping me off. Now I know it’s not Kid Laroi’s fault, so I looked into the director, and it turns out this dude follows me on Instagram. Coincidence? I think not.” Oliver Tree is signed to Atlantic, so he’s not exactly an “indie artist,” but he is certainly less popular than the Kid Laroi, whose #1 hit “Stay” with Justin Bieber has been in the Hot 100 top 10 for months.
The “Thousand Miles” director, Christian Breslauer, has helmed a lot of high-profile videos recently, including Lizzo’s “About Damn Time,” Lil Nas X and Jack Harlow’s “Industry Baby,” and the Weeknd’s “Die For You.” Neither Breslauer nor the Kid Laroi has commented on the situation. On Instagram, Breslaur wrote, “I inspired this concept off of the SPY vs SPY comics I loved as a kid!” He also says he only had a week to turn the video around, which Tree says further increases the likelihood that Breslauer stole his material. However, Tree says he is “not trying to ruin the guy’s career.” He tells RS:
I’m a much smaller artist. I don’t have a song with Justin Bieber. I don’t have a ‘one of the biggest songs of the year’ type situation,” he says. “It’s not cool to take that much influence from smaller artists and give it to bigger ones when they have a bigger budget and can make it look crazier… My contributions just get buried under the rug, which is something smaller artists feel all the time.
Check out Tree and Breslauer’s posts and both videos below.