Frank Ocean could be sued over his song "American Wedding."
Frank Ocean could be facing a lawsuit if he decides to perform his song "American Wedding" in concert again.
The song, which was originally released on his mixtape "Nostalgia, ultra," features a rendition of, and samples the Eagles' "Hotel California." Although Ocean did not profit off the song because he released it for free, it seems Eagles singer Don Henley was not happy when he found out, and Ocean took to his to Tumblr to comment on it:
"Don henley(’s label—Rhino) is apparently intimidated by my rendition of Hotel California..
He (They) threatened to sue if I perform it again. I think that’s fuckin awesome. I guess if I play it at coachella it’ll cost me a couple hundred racks. If I don’t show up to court, it’ll be a judgement against me & will probably show up on my credit report. Oh well. I try to buy my shit cash anyway. They also asked that I release a statement expressing my admiration for Mr. Henley, along with my assistance pulling it off the web as much as possible. Shit’s weird. Ain’t this guy rich as fuck? Why sue the new guy? I didn’t make a dime off that song. I released it for free. If anything I’m paying homage."
A rep for the Eagles has responded to Ocean, here's what he has to say:
"Frank Ocean did not merely “sample” a portion of the Eagles’ Hotel California; he took the whole master track, plus the song’s existing melody, and replaced the lyrics with his own. This is not creative, let alone “intimidating.” It’s illegal. For the record, Don Henley has not threatened or instituted any legal action against Frank Ocean, although the Eagles are now considering whether they should. Any further questions regarding this matter should be directed to Warner Music Group as it is the entity that currently owns the master recording and made the contact with Frank Ocean’s representatives concerning his infringement of the master recording. "(SOURCE)