Donna Summer’s Estate Also Accuses Kanye West Of Copyright Infringement
Earlier today, on the 20th anniversary of The College Dropout, Kanye West and Ty Dolla $ign released a new collaborative album called VULTURES 1. Ozzy Osbourne has already accused West of sampling a live performance of Black Sabbath’s “Iron Man” on it despite being denied permission to do so. (Last night Sharon Osbourne said she and Ozzy had issued a cease and desist and “Kanye fucked with the wrong Jew this time.”) Today, Donna Summer’s estate claimed West used one of the late disco legend’s hits also without authorization.
“Kanye West…asked permission to use Donna Summer’s song I Feel Love, he was denied,” Donna Summer’s official account posted in an Instagram Story, tagging Kanye and Ty Dolla along with publishing company Warner Chappell Music, record company Universal Music Group, and Sharon Osbourne. “he changed the words, had someone re sing it or used AI but it’s I Feel Love… copyright infrigement!!!”
“I Feel Love,” which was produced and co-written by Giorgio Moroder and Pete Bellotte, was a worldwide hit upon its release in 1977 and remains one of the most iconic electronic dance songs of all time. It’s been sampled dozens of times over the years, including on Beyoncé’s most recent album Renaissance. The VULTURES 1 song that interpolates it is called “GOOD (DON’T DIE).”
Like with “GOOD (DON’T DIE)” VULTURES 1 originally included an interpolation (but not a sample) of Backstreet Boys’ “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back),” sung by Charlie Wilson. Backstreet Boys reportedly did not clear that either, although since they did not write it, West would only have to pay royalties to the song’s original songwriters Max Martin and Denniz Pop. West’s “EVERYBODY” was not included on the version of the album released to streaming services today.
Kanye West has a long history of violating copyrights and just last year settled a dispute with Marshall Jefferson over the use of the house music icon’s 1986 song “Move Your Body” on Donda 2.
After several delays, VULTURES 1 arrives on West’s YZY label over a year after the rapper made widely condemned antisemitic comments that led Adidas, Balenciaga, Creative Arts Agency, and other companies to terminate their relationships with him. It was previewed in a series of public listening parties, including last night at Long Island’s UBS Arena.
Among the producers on VULTURES 1 are JPEGMAFIA (“STARS”) and James Blake (“TALKING,” which features vocals from North West, Kanye’s 10-year-old daughter with Kim Kardashian). In advance of the album Peggy posted a defense of his involvement and today he celebrated its release. Blake has not commented.