Drake is facing a possible lawsuit regarding an allegedly unapproved sample on his song, “Calling My Name.” Ghanaian musician Obrafour claims that Drake’s Honestly, Nevermind track uses “elements” of his 2003 song “Oye Ohene (Remix).” In his legal filing, Obrafour says Drake’s team sent him several emails requesting use of the sample, but he “had not yet responded” when the Toronto rapper went ahead and released the album.
“Nonetheless, the Infringing Work is one of the songs appearing on the Honestly, Nevermind album, as released to the world by ‘surprise’ on June 17, 2022,” the lawsuit states. “The copying of the Sampled Phrase in the Infringing Work is so direct in nature that the audio of the Sampled Phrase heard in the Infringing Work contains little or no audible manipulation, processing, or other alteration to its original character as heard in the Copyrighted Work.”
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Obrafour is seeking at least $10 million, citing “all profits and damages in the following categories attributable to the infringement” for “Calling My Name.” The suit adds, “To date, over the mere 304 days that have elapsed since the Infringing Work was released, the Infringing Work has already been streamed over 4.1 million times on YouTube, streamed over 47,442,160 times on Spotify, and streamed tens of millions of times on Apple Music.”
Drake released Honestly, Nevermind by surprise back in June 2022. It featured a stylistic change from his normal sound, this time opting for dance and house-inspired songs. It debuted atop the US Billboard 200 with 204,000 album-equivalent units, but was met with divisive responses from fans. The single “Jimmy Cooks,” featuring 21 Savage, reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was Drake’s eleventh song to do so. Lawsuits aren’t the only issue Drake is dealing with this week. Fans also keep using his voice to create new songs with A.I. technology. Universal Music Group has since called on streaming platforms to take down the songs. They shared a statement addressing the issue online on Tuesday.