'Flava' McGregor sues BMI

'Flava' McGregor sues BMI

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

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MUSIC producer Kemar “Flava” McGregor has taken American company Broadcast Music, Incorporated (BMI) to court for alleged breach of copyright.

The lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, on September 24.

According to court documents, McGregor alleges that BMI profited from several of his compositions without compensating him. He had signed a writer/publisher agreement with the music rights company in 2008.

“I sued them myself. I sat down an' write the lawsuit myself. Did you know, nobody can ever explain your situation like you? This is why mi file it. And if I get a lawyer put on it, all he has to do is to continue the journey,” the South Florida-based McGregor told the Jamaica Observer.

Formed in 1939, BMI is the largest music rights organisation in the United States. It represents more than 17 million musical works created and owned by over 1.1 million songwriters, composers and music publishers.

Court documents state that in early 2011, McGregor noticed that Bertlesmann Music Group Rights Management (BMG) began appearing on the compositions he registered with BMI. BMG allegedly advised him that VP Records and its publishing company STB Music had assigned his rights to them.

A former division of German media company Bertelsmann, a majority of BMG's assets were acquired by Sony Corporation of America in October 2008.

“I have been having discussions with BMI since 2011 and haven't been getting anywhere. I had no other choice but to sue them,” said McGregor.

This is not McGregor's first legal battle. In 2017 he had a similar tussle with VP Records for which there was an “out-of-court settlement”, and in July a Florida court threw out a two-year lawsuit filed by him against deejay Khago.

A former disc jockey, McGregor got involved in music production nearly two decades ago.

He has produced a number of hit songs including Gyptian's Mama Don't Cry, Queen Ifrica's Daddy Don't Touch Me There, Nothing to Smile About by Morgan Heritage, I am Not Afraid and H appy Heart by Etana, Board House by Nesbeth and Beres Hammond's I Surrender.

He has also produced two albums by Gyptian: My Name is Gyptian and I Can Feel Your Pain.

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