Frank Ocean and producer Om’Mas Keith have settled opposing lawsuits over writing credits on Ocean’s 2016 albums Blonde and Endless. Ocean sued Keith last year arguing the producer claimed unearned writing credits on songs from both LPs, prompting a countersuit from Keith. Court documents show each party agreed to pay their own legal fees, but the terms of the settlement are unclear.
Keith reportedly met Ocean around the time the singer released his 2011 mixtape Nostalgia, Ultra, and went on to contribute production on Ocean’s 2012 debut album Channel Orange, for which Keith was paid a flat fee (and earned a Grammy) but did not receive any songwriting credits or associated royalties. In an affidavit, Keith claimed Ocean offered him songwriting credit in 2014 to work on new music for Def Jam, and said he ultimately helped compose songs and contributed lyrics, but was never offered an agreement from the label reflecting these contributions.
Keith is still listed as a co-writer on nine Blonde songs in the online ASCAP repertory. We’ve requested comment from attorneys for both artists and will update if they respond. In any case, Billboard reports today that Endless, originally released as a visual album exclusive to Apple Music, will finally earn a proper release on streaming services as a normal album. It’s unclear whether this wonderful news is related to the legal settlement.