RZA is suing Japanese actress/ pianist Meiko Kaji over claims that he sampled her music.
RZA, the former Wu-Tang producer/emcee, isn't messing around when it comes to his music and lawsuits. He is currently taking Japanese pianist Meiko Kaji to court over claims that he sampled her music.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, RZA is suing Meiko Kaji and Teichiku Entertainment over claims that he illegally sampled Kaji's "Gincyo Watadori" for Kanye West's 2010 song "Dark Fantasy". RZA says that he did not sample the track and because of the lawsuit, Kanye's Def Jam label is withholding RZA compensation for his work.
The lawsuit began when Def Jam withheld $50,000 from RZA in royalties for the song on the basis that "it is entitled to indemnification from plaintiff against defendant's copyright infringement claim." Legal representation for RZA, Howard King, explained that the plaintiff's claim is false, and that it would have been impossible to use the sample without using other functions of Kaji's original song. King added:
"RZA did not use Teichiku’s piano run, and it sounds different from the one in 'Dark Fantasy,' ". "In fact, it would have been technologically impossible to sample the piano run without the rest of the music in 'Gincyo Watadori,' and the piano run in 'Gincyo' is so simple that the least talented person in the studio could have replayed it had anyone wished to do so."
In other legal issues, RZA faces a lawsuit for unpaid royalties from Dutch singer Thea Van Siejaen as well.