Musical artist De Rico thinks he had "Somebody to Love" (before that Usher came along!). Devin Copeland, a.k.a De Rico, and his writing partner, Mareio Overton, are suing Justin Bieber and Usher for a cool $10 million for copyright infringement.
Copeland alleges that "Somebody to Love" was featured on his 2008 album My Story II and that the two writers applied for (and were granted) copyright for the song.
According to the lawsuit, filed Thursday in Virginia, Copeland met with scouts from major labels including Island, Song and RCA. The labels then allegedly brought My Story II to a number of artists—which is where Usher got a hold of it. The suit states:
"Without any authority or consent, [Manager Jonetta Patton] and Usher conspired with songwriters and producers...to directly copy Plaintiffs' song 'Somebody to Love,' intending to appropriate Plaintiffs' intellectual property as their own."
Other defendants named in the suit include Heather Bright (who is credited with co-writing the Bieber track with production team The Stereotypes), Patton, Universal Music Corp. and Sony/ATV Music Publishing.
Usher originally recorded the track as a demo for his own album Raymond v. Raymond before giving it to the Biebs—the official remix was released on June 25, 2010.
Officially, Copeland and Overton as asking for at least $10 million in damages for copyright infringement, contributory infringement and vicarious infringement, as well as a permanent injunction preventing Bieber, Usher and the other listed defendants from laying any further claims to copyright.
Now that's a mouthful! We, for one, just sincerely hope that all parties involved will finally find someone to love, not war.