EXCLUSIVE: H.E.R. Hit With $3 Million Copyright Infringement Lawsuit Over “Focus” Song
H.E.R. Sued for $3 million
theJasmineBRAND exclusively reports, a major copyright infringement lawsuit in New York federal court has allegedly been filed against the Grammy winning artist H.E.R. (real name Gabrielle Wilson), music producer Darhyl “DJ” Camper and Justin Love for the hit song “Focus”.
In a letter obtained by theJasmineBRAND, songwriter and piano maestro Andre Sims reportedly sued the trio for copyright infringement. They claim that DJ Camper allegedly went on social media and publicly admitted he saw Sims playing his own song “Endless Minds” on YouTube and took it for H.E.R.’s smash hit song “Focus”. See the clip.
DJ Camper, who was the producer for H.E.R.’s hit song “Focus” talks about the inspiration for the track. Full story on https://t.co/4vM4qpi7Qh pic.twitter.com/N6rHbUF3g6
— theJasmineBRAND (@thejasminebrand) February 9, 2021
H.E.R. is coming off a big performance at the Super Bowl where she sang America the Beautiful.
Sony Music Entertainment, the album distributor was also included in the lawsuit. Andre Sims says,
“I am truly happy for H.E.R.’s success, but after months of trying to get the rights back to my song, neither she, nor DJ Camper or Justin Love have even apologized or tried to make this right. For decades, we as African-Americans and artists in general have had our music and copyrights stolen. We should never do this to each other. The damage is immeasurable and I will never get my due personally and financially, if they do not come clean and own up.”
“I just can’t believe she’s out her performing on TV, thanks to the benefit my original song brought to her first project -as if they didn’t use my song to get her there. So when I see her on tv singing about love and peace, it is amazing as you are a part of a team that unlovingly stole my music…unapologetically so…”.
Attorney James L. Walker, Jr., says,
“whether H.E.R. or Love stole the music or went in the studio and wrote the Focus lyrics to the music, it is clear H.E.R. and her album benefitted from a musical bed and copyright that was not hers.”
“If you buy stolen property innocently, most of us return it when we learn of its true origination and apologize for benefiting from it. Here, H.E.R. and co-writer Love have refused to do that with Mr. Sims, while making millions of dollars in publishing, royalties and touring off the success of the Focus song. Whether you stole it or not, you benefited and you must make it right or we will help you make it right in a court of law.”
Sims has added Attorneys Stephen M. Katz and Renorda E. Pryor to a team led by entertainment lawyer James L. Walker, Jr. Pryor says,
“It is most unfortunate when a talented artist like H.E.R. acts as if she and her production team did not rip this young man’s entire music and copyright,” said Pryor. “No matter where your career takes you, if you do not fix this, you will always have an asterisk next to your name like Tom Brady for dishonesty.”
“We will now push ahead with discovery and depositions and the truth will all come out.”
Sims has reportedly tried to notify Camper and the other writers, however, no one would cooperate in sharing any info on the song or the copyright associated with the song or the estimated $3 million the song has made and still makes. Sims says,
“We all loved H.E.R.’s rendition of America the Beautiful and the Super Bowl accolades, but I need these three people (Love, Camper and H.E.R.) to focus on the damage here and that I am still an artist-songwriter whose song was stolen and blew them all up”
“I had hoped to avoid court and a heated public outcry, but after months of trying to get them to do the right thing, they left me with no other alternative and my fans want me to fight back for what is rightfully mine in this copyright to the song.”
Mr. Sims sued for copyright infringement, injunctive relief, an accounting of all monies made and requests that the court require the defendants to create a constructive trust to hold royalties.
“We have asked the songwriters, their managers, lawyers and Sony to turn over all income associated with the song for several months now and they have refused to cooperate in any meaningful way,” said Attorney Walker, Jr.
Listen to Andre Sims’ “Endless Minds” below.
Listen to H.E.R.’s
What are your thoughts about this lawsuit? Let us know in the comments.