Beastie Boys Beat Legal Allegations Concerning ‘Paul’s Boutique’ Sampling
The rappers are in the clear after three years of legal wrangling
A judge has just dismissed a lawsuit against the Beastie Boys that claimed the legendary hip-hop trio used unauthorized samples on their 1989 album Paul’s Boutique. Plaintiff TufAmerica — who filed the suit against the rappers three years ago — claimed that all three members of the musical trio Trouble Funk had exclusively licensed the music from the samples in question to them, but Judge Alison Nathan found that TufAmerica never actually acquired such a license.
According to the lawsuit, TufAmerica arranged with two Trouble Funk members — Robert Reed and Tony Fisher — the sole right to administer their copyrights. However, “without the third co-owner [James Avery], Reed and Fisher could at best convey a non-exclusive license to TufAmerica,” the judge wrote in her verdict.
It’s a tricky lawsuit and dismissal that requires deeper digging to fully understand, but it’s good to know that the Beastie Boys have, for the moment, pulled themselves out of most of their recent legal predicaments. Check out the judge’s entire ruling below.