Megan Thee Stallion

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Megan Thee Stallion Wins Legal Battle Over "Savage" Copyright Lawsuit

  /  06.21.2024

Megan Thee Stallion recently scored another victory. She was cleared of accusations that her smash hit “Savage” copied an earlier, lesser-known track. Federal Judge Katherine Polk Failla ruled on Tuesday (June 18) that there was no evidence suggesting the Houston native had ever heard the instrumental in question.

The lawsuit, filed by James A. Greene, claimed Megan’s chart-topping single infringed upon his “It’s About To Be On.” The producer argued that the similarities in drum and piano patterns, as well as siren sounds, between his release and “Savage” were conclusive. 

However, as Billboard first reported on Thursday (June 20) evening, Failla found that the two records were “clearly different,” noting that “Savage” is a lyrically driven pop song with a vibrant tempo, in stark contrast to Greene’s repetitive instrumental piece.

“At best, [the] plaintiff alleges that he undertook his own efforts to distribute the work throughout the music industry to A&Rs, management teams, etc.,” the judge wrote. “Yet such efforts alone fall short of widespread distribution,” she added.

She continued, “In [Greene’s song], the siren sound is an atonal chord that appears to be created using a synthesizer. By contrast, in ‘Savage,’ the alleged siren sound is not a siren at all but rather a distorted vocal sample. Put simply, no reasonable listener would discern any similarity.”

“Savage” became a cultural phenomenon after its debut in March 2020, partly fueled by a viral TikTok dance challenge. A remix featuring Beyoncé, released roughly a month later, further boosted the single’s popularity. It even went to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Since then, Megan has put out numerous successful records. Her first joint effort with Cardi B, “WAP,” was RIAA-certified Platinum for the eighth time in 2023. Meanwhile, the Traumazine rapper’s “HISS” topped the Hot 100 in February 2024. The second-mentioned record will appear on her upcoming third studio album.

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