A California jury has awarded Christian rap artist, Flame, $2.78 million for copyright infringement by pop star Katy Perry.
According to Billboard, Perry must personally pay more than $550,000, and the Capitol Records must pay for the greater part of the judgment.
Perry’s five co-writers were each given penalties to pay, ranging from $60,000 for Dr. Luke to over $250,000 for Martin. The jurors decided that the single instrumental riff in question was responsible for 22.5 percent of the success of Perry’s chart-topping 2013 hit “Dark Horse.”
Flame, real name Marcus Gray, released “Joyful Noise” in 2009, four years before Perry released “Dark Horse” from her ‘Prism’ album. The rapper and two co-writers filed a lawsuit in 2014, claiming Perry stole their song.
Perry said that neither she nor her co-writers ever heard “Joyful Noise,” but Gray’s attorneys said the Christian song was widely distributed and had several million views on various outlets, including 2 million apiece on two separate YouTube channels.
Gray’s attorney, Michael A. Kahn, said during closing comments that Perry began her career as a Christian artist and that mainstream music is trying to push Christian music aside.
“They’re trying to shove Mr. Gray into some gospel music alleyway that no one ever visits,” Kahn said.
According to HuffPost, the defendants’ efforts to fight against the decision will begin immediately. U.S. District Judge Christina A. Snyder, who presided over the trial, will now consider a motion to throw out the case.
Lepera, Perry’s attorney, said the plaintiffs presented no evidence of copyright infringement, no evidence that the songwriters had access to “Joyful Noise” and no evidence the songs that were substantially similar.
We shall see how this whole ordeal concludes.