Justin Bieber, Usher Slapped With $10 Million Copyright Infringement Lawsuit

Justin Bieber, Usher Slapped With $10 Million Copyright Infringement Lawsuit

A pair of guys who actually want to take credit for writing Justin Bieber's "Somebody to Love" are seeking big bucks

Justin Bieber and his mentor, R&B singer Usher, are being sued for $10 million by a pair of songwriters who claim that Bieber's hit song "Somebody to Love" was stolen from them, according to a complaint obtained by TheWrap.

In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in eastern Virginia on Thursday, Devin Copeland — an R&B singer who performs under the name De Rico — and songwriter Mareio Overton say that they wrote "Somebody to Love" in 2008, the same year that De Rico released the song on his album "My Story II."

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The pair later met up with a promoter who hooked them up with music talent scouting company Sangreel Media, who said that they exposed Usher to Copeland's album, the lawsuit claims.

According to the complaint, the pair later spoke to Usher's mother/sometimes manager, Jonetta Patton, who said that Usher had listened to the album and expressed interest in bringing Copeland on tour with him.

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Usher worked up a demo version of the tune and posted it on YouTube, the suit says, and while he ultimately decided not to record it, Bieber did, including it on his album "My World 2.0."

The song, released by Bieber as a single, went to Number 15 on the charts, according to the suit. Moreover, Usher released a remix of the song, taking lead vocals with Bieber singing backup.

The suit cites numerous similarities between the plaintiffs' "Somebody to Love" and the Bieber/Usher version. Aside from the identical title, the suit says that the songs have the same time signature and chorus hook, both use similar chords at similar points in the songs, and both feature "call and response" passages at similar points in the songs.

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Perhaps most damningly, the suit claims, both songs "use one measure of strategic silence just prior to or at the beginning of the chorus."

Copeland and Overton are hoping that silence speaks volumes, and are asking for "an amount not less that Ten Million and 00/100 Dollars ($10,000,000.00) or other such amount as may be proven at trial."

Bieber's manager and attorney have not yet responded to TheWrap's request for comment on the suit, which alleges copyright infringement, contributory infringement and vicarious infringement.

Attempts to reach a spokesperson for Usher were unsuccessful.

Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.

  • Jon Francisco

    My question: Why is Usher producing this idiot?

    • Harry_Wild

      Usher has no singing talent! That why he got let go from “The Voice”. His fallback plan is his only discovery – Justin Bieber who makes 10 times that of his mentor – Usher!

      • prussia

        no fam.. music artist can sing where have you been

      • Reese

        you clearly have no idea as to what you are talking about

  • jonnyappleseeds

    it would warm my heart to see this little idiot be deprived of the money he has now

  • Rose

    Why would they want credit for anything that little douchecanoe sings?

  • rick harper

    thou shalt not steal….i read that somewhere….

    • prussia

      its called the BIBLE

  • Harry_Wild

    Justin Bieber made over $75 million last year so he can hire the best lawyer to beat the rap! LOL!

    • Reese

      or just pay the 10 million.. shouldn't have stolen the song