Mary J. Blige’s Hit Single ‘Real Love’ At The Center Of UMG Copyright Lawsuit

Mary J. Blige

Mary J. Blige’s Hit Single ‘Real Love’ At The Center Of UMG Copyright Lawsuit

A recently filed lawsuit against Universal Music Group is accusing the company of profiting off of a stolen sample.

According to reports, the plaintiff alleges that a song UMG has in their catalog, Mary J. Blige’s “Real Love”, sampled a song they own without permission and is now seeking compensation.

The legal complaint was reportedly filed by a company called TufAmerica, Inc., owners of music subsidiary Tuff City Records. In their filing, Tuff says the 1992 Mary J. Blige classic unlawfully sampled their 1973 song “Impeach the President” in both its sound recording and musical composition. They also claim to have reached out numerous times to UMG in efforts to settle the issue, but says thus far they have’t gotten a response, prompting legal action.

At this time, it does not appear that UMG nor Blige has commented publicly about the suit. In case you’re unfamiliar with the song, “Real Love” was released by the musician as part of her debut studio album “What’s the 411?”. It was Blige’s first Billboard charting record, peaking at #7 on the Hot 100 and launching her to stardom. The song was released by Uptown and MCA records, which is under the UMG umbrella. The report notes that Blige herself was not named as a defendant in Tuff’s suit.

The report also notes that though Tuff’s song isn’t credited, “Real Love” does feature a sample credit from another hip-hop record titled “Top Billin” by 80’s rap group Audio Two. On their song, it’s reported that “Impeach The President” is in fact credited as a sample.

Tuff is reportedly suing UMG for damages, and wants a court judge to prevent them from continuing to profit from the record until their case is heard. It has not been reported that a judge has ruled on the matter at this time.


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Authored by: Kay Johnson