Photo: Insasse

George Michael’s Estate Sues Tory Lanez

George Michael‘s estate and the artist’s former Wham! partner, Andrew Ridgeley have taken action against Tory Lanez for sampling their song ‘Careless Whisper’ without permission.

According to the complaint, the rapper allegedly used a sample of Michael’s 1985 hit single in his track ‘Enchanted Waterfall’ from his 2021 album Alone at Prom, even after permission was denied. 

In a statement issued to Variety on behalf of the George Michael estate and Ridgeley:

“It was brought to our attention that the song Enchanted Waterfall by the artist Tory Lanez incorporated an unauthorised sample of Careless Whisper written by George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley,” “Requested permission for this use had been declined in June 2021 so we took immediate action on behalf of the writers, in collaboration with our publishers Warner Chappell Music, to prevent further exploitation as we will not tolerate any unauthorised use of any songs within the catalogues of George Michael and/or Andrew Ridgeley.”

According to Variety, the estate took action to get Enchanted Waterfall removed from Spotify and it was taken down from the service earlier this year. However, it still remains on Apple Music and YouTube. The George Michael estate and Warner Chappell Music executives similarly moved to strike Yung Gravy’s song Flex Season, which also sampled Careless Whisper, in 2020.

Not the first song from Alone at Prom to encounter sampling issues, Madonna previously called Lanez out on social media for sampling her ‘Into The Groove’ on his track ‘Pluto’s Last Comet.’ It is unclear if this matter has been resolved.

‘Careless Whisper’ was co-written by George Michael and Ridgeley and appeared on the duo’s Make It Big full length.

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Author: Al Denté

Photo: Insasse