Nicki Minaj has become the latest high-profile artist to get sued for copyright infringement. The Chicago Tribune reports that underground EDM artist Clive Tanaka is suing the Young Money rapper over the song “Starships.”
“Starships” was a huge hit for Minaj. The song debuted at number nine on the Billboard 200 and peaked at number five. It has sold over 7 million copies worldwide and its video currently has over 145 million views on YouTube.
Tanaka filed the lawsuit under his company, Tanaka Light Industries USA, claiming that “Starships” took elements from his 2011 song “Neu Chicago.” The lawsuit also names producer Red One (Nadir Khayat) and songwriters Carl Falk, Wayne Hector, and Rami Yacoub.
The suit states that Khayat and other “Starships” collaborators are Swedish citizens and probably heard “Neu Chicago” from television ads running in the country featuring the track.
“They had a very good opportunity to hear it,” said Tanaka’s attorney Christopher Niro. ”We believe they are similar to the point that it is nearly impossible for it to be a coincidence.
Listen to Clive Tanaka’s mash-up of “Starships” and “Neu Chicago” called “Neu Starships” where both tracks are played simultaneously through different speakers.