Kanye West’s lawsuit became public in 2019 against publisher, EMI, because apparently he is not allowed to retire according to a contract he signed in 2003. West is stating that he’s stuck in an illegal publishing deal that should have expired in October 2010. He is demanding ownership over all the songs that were made after 2010, he wants the last four year’s worth of money that EMI had made off his catalog. He also is asking EMI to pay for all the court fees the situation has caused including the lawyer.
Apparently Kanye’s contract kept being extended over the years making it very hard to keep up with the demands of the contract meaning he was required to write three “Full New Compositions” a year which actually went up to six in the renewals. EMI’s argument is that they are trying to move this case to a federal court since it would disarm Kanye’s argument, which implies a California state law not a federal one. EMI states that the lawsuit is not about a contract instead, it’s about who owns copyrights to the songs and that involves the feds. Adding to all this, people are wondering if the deal was so bad why would he keep renewing the contract when it was clearly stated, “At no time during this term will you seek to retire as a songwriter, recording artist or producer or take and extended hiatuses. Kanye’s defense states the way everything was modified there was “No break services.” Contracts only last seven years to give the person a chance to look around for other options. Kanye apparently never had those choices. We are hoping Kanye can keep pursuing his musical artistry without too much conflict.