With “7 rings” Ariana Grande was able to turn some streaming records in the music scene upside down and was even nominated for a Grammy for the song. Now, however, the singer is facing a lawsuit – is the successful track in reality plagiarism?
676 million clicks on YouTube and over a billion streams on Spotify are a real announcement. With “7 rings” Ariana Grande was able to achieve a huge success and even set a new record for most listeners on the day of the release. At the 2020 Grammys, the track is also nominated in the “Record of the Year” category, alongside the megahits “Bad Guy” by Billie Eilish, “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X. According to the “Variety” magazine, the song has already brought in over nine million euros. Now, however, the 26-year-old could dispute her gigantic triumph: because the rapper Josh Stone alias DOT sees a copy of his own song “You Need It I Got It” in “7 rings” and takes a lawsuit in front of the district court New York.
Did Ariana Grande steal “7 rings”?
Josh Stone’s allegation is clear: Ariana Grande would have stolen the lyrics of the hook of his song “You Need It I Got It”. In his 2017 track he raps under his stage name “DOT”: “You need it, I got it. You want it, I got it.” In 2019 the “Bang Bang” interpreter finally sings: “I want it, I got it. I want it, I got it.” But not only the textual similarity would stand out – the flow of the hook lines should also be almost identical. According to the rapper’s complaint, this thesis was confirmed by several musicologists. “From a purely metrical point of view, all 39 notes in” 7 rings “are really identical to the 39 notes in ‘You Need It I Got It'”, says the application. Simply put: the flow and the rhyme scheme of the chorus are the same.
The matter is made particularly interesting by the claim that Josh Stone presented his track Thomas Lee Brown in 2017 in a meeting with the Universal Music Group – the producer has already been heavily involved in five Ariana Grande albums. The charges include the songwriter and Ariana Grande, six other people involved. Stone and his lawyer Tamir Young are convinced:
“Josh’s song was used without his consent, without his knowledge and without a license. A lot of people have made a lot of money from Josh’s work and that’s wrong. It’s copyright infringement,” Young told CNN. It remains to be seen whether the lawsuit will be successful. It is not the first legal battle for Ariana Grande: In 2016, the singer was sued with copy allegations for her joint hit with David Guetta “One Last Time”. At that time, however, the parties were able to reach an agreement out of court.