Chris Brown has settled the lawsuit brought by Greensleeves Publishing.
The R&B singer’s lawyer filed a motion on Wednesday (Sept 7) to stay the case as the parties reached a final settlement. Chris Brown along with his company Chris Brown TV and Song Music Entertainment, was sued last year by Greensleeves which owns the masters for the Red Rat track “Tight Up Skirt.” Greensleeves had sued Brown and the other defendants for $1.5 million in damages.
According to Greensleeves Publishing, Brown had copied key parts of Red Rat’s 1997 hit, including lyrics from the hook and the song’s melody, and used it in his 2017 single, “Privacy.”
The parties, however, applied to the court for a stay in proceedings as they negotiate a settlement. In a September 7 letter obtained by Urban Islandz sent to Judge Robert Lehrburger of the United States District Court, Southern District of New York, Brown’s lawyer James Sammataro said that Chris Brown, whose full name is Christopher Maurice Brown, and his company Chris Brown TV said that the parties had come to a settlement.
“We write with the permission of Daniel Aaron, counsel plaintiff Greensleeves Publishing Ltd., and Jonathan King, counsel for the co-defendant Sony Music Entertainment… we write to advise Your Honor that the parties have reached a settlement in principal which fully resolves the matter,” Sammataro wrote.
Sammataro added that the agreement has not been reduced in writing as yet and requested 45 days to finalize the settlement.
“The parties intend to reduce their settlement into a formal agreement,” he continues. “This process will necessitate a little time, particularly given my current schedule which includes a trial scheduled for next week. In light of the parties’ settlement, and in order to [allow] for sufficient time to finalize the needed paperwork, the parties respectfully request that this matter be stayed for a period of 45 days so that they can amicably resolve this matter.”
Nothing about the terms of the negotiations or settlement was revealed, and the stay order was granted by the judge.
Last year, Greensleeves claimed that Brown used the iconic “aye you girl inna the tight up skirt” in his chorus, which is the same line in the hook “Tight Up Skirt”. Brown’s song is now certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America.
Red Rat, who was not a part of the lawsuit, has not commented on it. However, Greensleeves claimed that the song was the biggest hit from Red Rat’s debut album, ‘Oh, no…it’s Red Rat’, and it was produced and distributed by Greensleeves Publishing.
According to Greensleeves in its court filings, it owns and administers exclusive music publishing rights in the United States for Red Rat’s single.
Along with the lyrics, the lawsuit also showed examples of how similar the timbre and cadence were between both songs, as it alleged that in “Privacy,” there was “a very spare instrumental accompaniment.”
Greensleeves Publishing which is a prominent label in the reggae and dancehall music industry, has been around since 1975.
The company has one of the largest reggae and dancehall catalogs for some of the top 90s artists, including Barrington Levy, Red Rat, Dennis Brown, Mad Cobra, and many others.
The Publishing house has not commented on the latest development in the case. This is the second lawsuit that Chris Brown has settled this week. On Thursday (Sept 8), the artist settled a lawsuit brought by two artists who claimed that his song “No Guidance” featuring Drake copied a song they released years before.