Lil Nas X has issued a denial in response to a copyright infringement lawsuit over his hit single Rodeo.
Producer Brandon Lee, aka Don Lee, and his collaborator Glen Keith filed a lawsuit in October alleging the track features elements of their 2017 work gwenXdonlee4-142, which were used in the PuertoReefa and Sakrite Duexe track Broad Day.
According to court documents obtained by Pitchfork Media, Lil Nas X has denied that the track, which features Cardi B, was created from stolen pieces of uncredited songs.
“The work, Rodeo, was created independently from and without knowledge of the allegedly infringed work,” the 20-year-old’s court statement, filed last week, reads. “Without admitting the use of any copyrighted material allegedly owned by Plaintiffs, the conduct of which they complain was impliedly and/or expressly licensed.”
Speaking to Pitchfork, Scott Alan Burroughs, an attorney for Lee and Keith, said: “The answer filed by the defense is standard and contains no real evidence that disputes or rebuts the copyright claims in the complaint. We look forward to our day in court.”
Their lawsuit claims that Broad Day was “performed, published, and distributed widely, including without limitation in and around the Atlanta hip-hop scene” and that the star may have heard this song in his hometown before lifting elements for his song.
Lil Nas X performed Rodeo at the 2020 Grammy Awards in January and it has reached number 22 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart.
The producers are demanding acknowledgement as writers and royalty payments. They are also taking legal action against Cardi B’s former manager Klenord ‘Shaft’ Raphael as part of their case.