No response from Jay Z as of yet.
Just when things were starting to look up for Jay Z and his TIDAL streaming service, the rap mogul has hit another setback. While subscriptions have skyrocketed due to Kanye West’s exclusive partnership with TIDAL, another party led by musician John Emanuele and Yesh Music LLC has delivered a lawsuit aimed at TIDAL and its ownership group.
The suit names Jay Z’s company S. Carter Enterprises and two other companies with ownership stakes in TIDAL as defendants, as exclusively reported by TheJasmineBrand. It claims that 118 songs from Yesh Music’s catalog (specifically songs by the band The American Dollar) are available on TIDAL for streaming but that neither the band nor Yesh Music gave permission for the songs’ use. They also claim no royalties were paid for any of the songs’ streams. Check out the full legal document here.
While the total cost of the lawsuit is only $5 million, not necessarily a sum Jay Z would have a problem paying, other claims made in the suit could be more damaging to his business via bad PR. Other accusations in the suit include TIDAL carefully and knowingly underpaying royalties to some artists by miscalculating their per-stream royalty rates, and then failing to provide monthly accounting reports for their earned royalties.
These would be damning accusations for a streaming service whose biggest selling point is that it has been set up by artists, for artists, with the aim of paying musicians a fairer share of music profits. If the accusations are true, it would make sense for Jay Z and company to settle this one out of court quickly before TIDAL takes any killing blows in the media.
None of the defendants have made any statements on the matter.