Photo: Wjack12

Rick Astley Sues Yung Gravy

On Thursday (1.26,) Rick Astley filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles claiming that, while he gave Yung Gravy, permission to sample the instrumental of his 1987 #1 hit ‘Never Gonna Give You Up,’ the rapper (born Matthew Hauri) used an unauthorized imitation of UK singer in his 2022 single, ‘Betty (Get Money.)’

According to the lawsuit, Astley did not allow his voice to be used or grant permission to Hauri to hire an impersonator to mimic him. According to Billboard, the British musician’s lawyers stated:

“A license to use the original underlying musical composition does not authorize the stealing of the artist’s voice in the original recording.” “So, instead, they resorted to theft of Mr. Astley’s voice without a license and without agreement.” They claimed that Yung Grazy hired Nick Seeley (pka Popnick) to imitate Astley’s “signature voice” on the track without his permission. 

“In an effort to capitalize off of the immense popularity and goodwill of Mr. Astley, defendants… conspired to include a deliberate and nearly indistinguishable imitation of Mr. Astley’s voice throughout the song,” the lawyers continued. “The public could not tell the difference. The imitation of Mr. Astley’s voice was so successful the public believed it was actually Mr. Astley singing.”

Rick’s attorneys claim the ‘Betty (Get Money)’ creators violated their client’s right of publicity, and allege Hauri violated federal trademark law by falsely claiming that Astley endorsed the song.  And Astley is suing Hauri, Seeley, the song’s producers and Republic Records executives for millions of dollars.

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Author: Al Denté

Photo: Wjack12