Kanye West is being sued by a former child singer over an alleged unlicensed sample in “Bound 2.”
Ricky Spicer, a member of the 1960s group The Ponderosa Twins Plus One, claimed that West used his lyrics without his permission on the track.
Spicer said the sample is taken from a song he recorded when he was 12 years old. Now 56, Spicer filed a lawsuit in Manhattan Supreme Court yesterday accusing West of using the “fallin’ in love” refrain from the group’s song “Bound” without his permission.
“Mr. Spicer’s voice is sampled exactly as he recorded it and his voice … is heard several times,” the lawsuit said. The suit also names Roc-A-Fella Records, Island Def Jam Music, Rhino Entertainment, and Universal Music Group as defendants.
Ricky Spicer was living in the Ohio Boys Town orphanage when he was discovered at a 1969 talent show. Music publisher Chuck Brown got him to join The Ponderosa Twins, then made up two sets of twins, according to the New York Daily News.
“He was their Michael Jackson,” said Spicer’s attorney, Vincent Imbesi.
Neither Kanye West nor the record labels have responded to the lawsuit.
“Bound 2” peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and No. 12 on the Hot 100. West premiered the video, which features his fiancee Kim Kardashian, on Ellen in November. Less than a week later, Seth Rogen and James Franco parodied the video, which Kardashian said she thought was funny.
This isn’t the first time Kanye West has been sued over a sample in one of his songs. In April, West was sued by Trena Steward and Lorenzo Pryor over the use of a sample from Thunder Lightning’s “Bumpin’ Bus Stop,” which they wrote, in 2005’s “Gold Digger.” Steward and Pryor claimed that West and other defendants have “engaged in the repeated willful infringement of Plaintiffs’ copyrighted music on a massive scale by sampling Plaintiffs’ copyrighted music.”
Check out The Ponderosa Twins Plus One’s “Bound” and Kanye West’s “Bound 2” below.