The Weeknd settles Call Out My Name copyright case
The Weeknd’s ‘Call Out My Name’ copyright infringement case has been settled.
‘Blinding Lights’ hitmaker The Weeknd – whose real name is Abel Tesfaye – and co-defendants Nicolás Jaar and Frank Dukes were sued by producers Suniel Fox and Henry Strange in 2021, who claimed the track from the megastar’s 2018 debut EP ‘My Dear Melancholy’ was “strikingly and/or substantially similar, if not identical” to their unreleased track ‘Vibeking’.
However, on March 17, Fox and Strange’s attorneys filed papers confirming both sides had reached a settlement, details of which have not been made public, meaning the case is likely to be dismissed.
The filing, as seen by Rolling Stone, read: “Because the parties are still in the process of formalising, executing, and consummating that settlement, Plaintiff respectfully requests that the Court take all dates off calendar and set a date in 30 days for the parties to file a joint status report if the case has not already been dismissed.”
Jaar had insisted that he had no hand in co-writing the track as The Weeknd used an interpolation of his 2016 song ‘Killing Time’.
Fox and Strange – who make up the duo Epikker – argued that the songs contained “quantitatively and qualitatively similar material in their respective lead guitar and vocal hooks, including melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic elements distinctive to ‘Vibeking’.”
Their attorneys added: “Both works are in a 6/8 meter that is less common in popular music. Both works are played at a similar tempo. And both works use features of electronica, ambience, pop, hip-hop, rock, and R B to achieve a particularly atmospheric and melancholic sound.”
Despite ‘Vibeking’ never being released, the pair claimed the ‘Die For You’ hitmaker had heard their song.
As evidence, they shared an email correspondence which they claimed to be from the artist’s “playback engineer” and stated that the 33-year-old Grammy winner had “listened [to] and liked” ‘Vibeking’.