LOS ANGELES, Calif.–Two separate but related copyright infringement lawsuits were filed today in the Southland against the Black Eyed Peas and the hip hop group’s record labels and publishers.
A call to a representative for the Black Eyed Peas, which was formed in East Los Angeles in 1995 and is fronted by will.i.am and Fergie, was not immediately returned.
The first complaint, filed in federal court in Santa Ana, alleges the Black Eyed Peas intentionally copied Texas songwriter Bryan Pringle’s song “Take a Dive” when they co-wrote and recorded their Grammy Award-winning hit “I Gotta Feeling.”
The other complaint is the re-filing in Los Angeles federal court of a lawsuit brought in January by Chicago artist Ebony Latrice Batts, aka Phoenix Phenom, and her producer and co-songwriter, Manfred “Manny” Mohr.
That suit, originally filed in Chicago, accuses the Black Eyed Peas of copying the plaintiffs’ “Boom Dynamite” for the band’s hit “Boom Boom Pow.”
Both complaints allege that UMG Recordings, Interscope Records and members of the Black Eyed Peas engaged in “a pattern and practice of intentional copyright infringement with respect to the unlawful copying of songs of unknown or lesser-known artists,” according to plaintiffs’ attorney Dean A. Dickie of the law firm Miller Canfield.
The two suits seek damages, including all net profits received by the defendants as a result of the two songs, as well as future credits and royalty payments.