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Kanye West, Lil Wayne Songs Named in EMI Suit Against Def Jam Rapstar

The company behind the video game Def Jam Rapstar is being sued by publishing house EMI for failing to clear songs that are featured in the game, including tunes by Kanye West, DMX and Lil Wayne, among others.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, the various subsidiaries of EMI filed the lawsuit in New York federal court last week and is alleging substantial damages incurred by the video game creators’ inability to obtain musical rights required for the songs to be featured on the game. Def Jam Rapstar was produced by 4mm Games and Terminal Reality, both co-defendants in the lawsuit.

The suit also says EMI notified the game makers about its rights to account for royalties, but the demands were ignored. The complaint includes a listing of compositions and sound recordings that were used in the game, including DJ Khaled’s “I’m So Hood,” which EMI claims 10 percent ownership, MIMS’ “This Is Why I’m Hot,” a song with 16 writers which EMI claims 16 percent ownership, and Lil Wayne’s “Got Money,” which EMI claims 30 percent ownership.

EMI also says some of its sound recordings were infringed in the game, like Daft Punk’s “Harder Better Faster Stronger,” which was sampled by Kanye West on the song “Stronger.”

In total, the suit lists 54 songs that were infringed, and now the label wants statutory damages in the amount of $150,000 for each of those infringements, not to mention other potential damages for violations of EMI’s other rights. —Mariel Concepcion (@Mceezy)

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