Rap newcomer Mac Miller is fighting a $10 million (£6.25 million) lawsuit from legendary hip-hop star Lord Finesse over allegations of copyright infringement.
Producer Finesse filed legal papers in a New York federal court on Monday (09Jul12), accusing Miller of sampling his 1995 track Hip 2 The Game on his breakout hit Kool Aid & Frozen Pizza without permission.
The music veteran claims the song, which featured on his K.I.D.S. mixtape in 2010, ultimately launched Miller's career and was the key stepping stone to scoring him a U.S. number one with his debut release Blue Slide Park last year (11).
Finesse is demanding compensation for charges including copyright infringement, unfair competition, unjust enrichment, interference and deceptive trade practices. He has also named Miller's label bosses at Rostrum Records and the owners of the website DatPiff.com, who initially made the mixtape available for download, as defendants in the case.
Miller has responded to the suit, insisting Finesse had previously praised him for his work on Kool Aid & Frozen Pizza, adding the original track is based on a jazz beat the veteran doesn't own the rights to.
In a series of Twitter.com posts on Wednesday (11Jul12), he writes, "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... 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... All I wanted to do is shed light on a generation that inspired me...
"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. When I heard there was a problem, I reached out to him to try and solve it. No response."
But Miller, 20, is refusing to let the lawsuit taint his view of the icon: "It's all love tho (though). I ain't (sic) even mad at (the) dude. He (is) still a legend. Lord Finesse, thank you for what u (sic) did for hip hop."