MacFInesse420

It appears that hip-hop legend and DITC member, Lord Finesse, is suing Mac Miller for $10 million.  Finesse claims that Miller straight jacked the instrumental from  “Hip 2 Da Game” for the mixtape track “Kool Aid & Frozen Pizza” and falsely presented it to the public as an original recording when it was released on his breakthrough mixtape, K.I.D.S. in 2010.  A complaint issued by Finesse, that can be found here, states that the New York legend issued a cease and desist letter to Mac and Rostrum Records, as well as mixtape hosting site DatPiff.com, all of whom subsequently ignored the letter.  Finesse also states in the complaint, “This is a case about a teenage rapper- Mac Miller- copying the music from a song written, produced and performed by Lord Finesse, a hip hop legend, changing the title and then distributing it under his own name in order to launch his music career.”  According to the same source, the lawsuit cites a New York Time’s article from last November in which Mac articulates that he has used his mixtapes as promotional tools to launch various streams of revenue.

 

 

After news of the lawsuit went viral, Mac took to Twitter to ‘reluctantly’ issue a statement in response to the suit.  Miller stated the following via a series of Tweets:

 

“I’m supposed to be on hush but lemme speak on this real quick. 1. I made that record and video as nothing more than an 18 year old kid who wanted to rhyme and pay homage, no other intentions. 2. Finesse and I spoke on the phone for an hour after he heard the record and cleared the air. We even planned to work on music together. 3. All I wanted to do is shed light on a generation that inspired me. 5. Finesse never cleared the Oscar Peterson sample on the original record. I did nothing wrong. We spoke on the phone had a good conversation, he was cool with the record. It’s all love tho. I ain’t even mad at dude. He still a legend. 4. When I heard there was a problem, I reached out to him to try and solve it. No response. Lord Finesse, thank you for what u did for hip hop. Thank you for bringing my favorite rapper into the game.”

 


 
Regardless of whether Mac did in fact “clear the air” with Finesse after the song was released, that was 2 years ago.  Since then, Mac has become an international star, whose threshold has extended beyond the realm of just hip-hop.  In 2011, he became the first independent artist in sixteen years to debut at number one on the Billboard 200.  Is Finesse wrong to want a portion of what he may indeed be responsible for?  Right now, “Kool Aid & Frozen Pizza” has 58,000 views on Mac’s channel alone; that’s not to mention the numerous copies available on the same site (including 2 versions with nearly 500k views a piece).  There’s no way that anyone can argue that “Kool Aid” hasn’t significantly increased Mac’s fan base.

 

One point that I find interesting is that Mac states, “Finesse never cleared the Oscar Peterson sample on the original record.”  That would be worth mentioning had this situation been like the one Lupe Fiasco and Pete Rock found themselves a couple of months ago, but the fact is that Mac nor any of his in-house producers re-flipped the sample.  They literally just recorded over Finesse’s beat.  If Finesse has never cleared the sample, that’s really his problem to deal with.  Mac did however use a composition constructed by Lord Finesse and did not compensate him for the use of it.

 

What will come of this?  Who knows.  My guess is that this won’t actually see a court room, but you never know.  What I do know though, is this is not the first time that Mac Miller has jacked a beat and not credited the producer.  In July 2010, Mac dropped a song and video called “La La La La.” Up North Productions, who produced the track, were none to pleased by Mac’s lack of credit, especially after they contacted him several times about just writing, “produced by Up North Productions” in the description on YouTube.  The result of this dispute is the confrontation below, which is now a piece of viral video history.

 

Update: Lord Finesse just took to Twitter to respond to Mac’s recent tweets regarding the situation.

 

 

 

 

 

Update # 2: Apparently Mac reached out to Finesse over the phone and the suit is still on.  See the tweets below: