Correction: The following post states that lawyers for Sony Music admitted in court that vocals on three songs from Michael Jackson’s posthumous 2010 album were recorded by an impostor. Based on reports from multiple people apparently in attendance at a hearing this week, the concession by Sony Music’s attorney that the vocals were not Jackson’s was instead made hypothetically, as part of a narrow legal argument that even if the vocals were not Jackson’s, the First Amendment would still protect Sony Music’s right to sell and market the album as such. Sony Music provided the following statement to Variety:
“No one has conceded that Michael Jackson did not sing on the songs. The hearing Tuesday was about whether the First Amendment protects Sony Music and the Estate and there has been no ruling on the issue of whose voice is on the recordings.”
This story originally appeared on Vibe, and was syndicated by SPIN.
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In 2010, several songs were released that were said to be recorded by the late Michael Jackson. Four years later, one fan questioned the music’s validity, leading many to believe the music was fraudulent. Now, nearly three years after the scandal, Sony Music Entertainment has admitted to releasing and selling fake tunes by the late legend.
The fake songs reportedly appeared on the 2010 posthumous album Michael. The songs in question include: “Monster,” “Keep Your Head Up,” and “Breaking News.” In court documents obtained by Karen Civil, Vera Servoa – the fan who kickstarted the investigation into the fake MJ songs – filed a civil suit, accusing Jackson’s longtime friends Eddie Cascio, James Victor Porte, and his production company, Angelikson Productions LLC of creating and selling music through Sony and the Jackson estate.
Cascio and Porte initially claimed that the songs were recorded in Cascio’s basement in 2007. Serova and the Jackson family, contested those claims however. While the singles sounded similar to MJ’s sound, they said Michael never recorded them. Serova testified in the Los Angeles Superior Court that they were recorded by an impersonator named Jason Malachi.
Consequently, Sony Music Entertainment conceded in court, that it had released fake singles. It’s unclear if fans or Jackson’s estate will be awarded for the criminal behavior or whether there will be an monetary punishment for Sony.
This article originally appeared on Vibe.