Beyoncé Sued for Alleged Copyright Infringement Over Hit Song

Bad news for Beyoncé. The “Texas Hold ‘Em” singer has just been accused of allegedly stealing a sample used in her 2022 song “Break My Soul”.

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In a lawsuit filed on Wednesday in federal court in Louisiana, members of quartet Da Showstoppaz asserted that bounce icon Big Freedia had unlawfully utilized copyrighted lyrics and melody from Da Showstoppaz’s 2002 song “Release A Wiggle” in her 2014 song “Explode”. “Explode” was sampled on Beyonce’s “Break My Soul” in 2022.

Da Showstoppaz members Brian Clark, Tessa Avie, Keva Bourgeois, and Henri Braggs have sued Beyoncé for the alleged infringement, along with Big Freedia, Jay-Z, and Sony Music as a whole.

Did Beyoncé Steal a Sample?

It seems like the suit has more to do with Big Freedia’s use of Da Showstoppaz’s sample. However, Beyoncé did indeed use the sample in “Break My Soul”. Whether or not using the sample is considered unlawful will be up to a court to decide.

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“’Explode’ infringes on Da Showstoppaz’s ‘Release A Wiggle’ twelve times, as the infringing phrase ‘release yo’ wiggle’ and several other substantially similar phrases are featured prominently in the song and evenly spread out across [Explode’s] furious two-minute and forty-seven-second runtime,” the official lawsuit says, according to a report from USA Today. “Any reasonable person listening to ‘Release A Wiggle’ and ‘Explode’ would conclude that the songs are substantially similar.”

Representatives for Da Showstoppaz went on to allege that Beyoncé and Big Freedia both pulled in a lot of money in profits for using the sample on their respective songs. Meanwhile, Da Showstoppaz have received nothing, including acknowledgment of the sample being used.

The group ultimately wants to be credited on “Break My Soul” and “Explode” for their contributions. They have also requested royalties from future profits of both songs. 

No further updates on the lawsuit have been made available. Neither Beyoncé nor Big Freedia have commented on being sued by Da Showstoppaz as of this writing.

Photo by Robert Gauthier

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