Jay Z And TIDAL Sued For Not Paying Artist Royalties
UPDATE (2/29/16): TIDAL issued a statement regarding the lawsuit.
“TIDAL is up to date on all royalties for the rights to the music stated in Yesh Music, LLC and John Emanuele’s claim and they are misinformed as to who, if anyone, owes royalty payments to them. As Yesh Music, LLC admits in their claim, TIDAL has the rights to the Master Recordings through its distributor Tunecore and have paid Tunecore in full for such exploitations. Their dispute appears to be over the mechanical licenses, which we are also up to date on payments via Harry Fox Agency our administrator of mechanical royalties.
“The entire catalogue in question streamed fewer than 13,000 times on TIDAL and its predecessor over the past year. We have now removed all music associated with Yesh Music, LLC and John Emanuele from the service. This is the first we have heard of this dispute and Yesh Music, LLC should be engaging Harry Fox Agency if they believe they are owed the royalties claimed. They especially should not be naming S Carter Enterprises, LLC, which has nothing to do with TIDAL. This claim serves as nothing other than a perfect example of why America needs Tort reform.”
See the original post below.
Jay Z and TIDAL have been sued for failing to pay artist royalties.
“Ironically, when Defendant [Shawn, as in Jay Z] CARTER purchased the TIDAL Music Service in 2015, it claimed it would be the first streaming service to pay the artists,” the lawsuit, filed by post-rock band the American Dollar and its indie label Yesh Music, reads. “Different owner, same game.”
To clarify, one of the initial selling points of the artist-owned TIDAL is that it would pay more money to artists than streaming services like Spotify. In the American Dollar’s experience, however, TIDAL hasn’t been as mindful as its high-profile owners claimed it would be. The lawsuit says that TIDAL made its catalog available without notifying the label, failed to disclose streaming numbers and was “deliberately miscalculating the per-stream royalty rates.”
Unfortunately, this lawsuit may not be surprising to some. Co-owner Kanye West‘s new album The Life Of Pablo failed to chart on the Billboard 200 because TIDAL didn’t report streaming numbers. (TIDAL is the only streaming service that offers TLOP.) Universal Music Group also blamed TIDAL for prematurely posting Rihanna‘s new album ANTI in January.