Katy Perry and rapper Juicy J have damaged the reputation of several gospel rappers by stealing their work and associating it with anti-Christian witchcraft, paganism, black magic and Illuminati imagery, according to a federal copyright lawsuit filed this week in St. Louis.
The suit claims that in 20 08 St. Louis-based Christian rappers Marcus Gray (a.k.a. Flame) and Chike Ojukwu released the song "Joyful Noise" with two other Christian hip-hop musicians -- Lecrae Moore of Atlanta and Emanuel Lambert of Pennsylvania.
That song went on to earn a nomination for a 2008 Gospel Music Association Dove Award and get nearly 3 million views on YouTube. But that number pales in comparison to the the 440 million YouTube views Perry and Juicy J's "Dark Horse" has tallied in just the past four months.
Michael Kahn, one of the attorneys representing the plaintiffs, tells Daily RFT that similarities between the two songs came to the attention of his clients when people began contacting them to mention how Perry's song seemed to resemble "Joyful Noise."
And while the two songs may not be as similar as, say, Vanilla Ice's infamous sampling of David Bowie's "Under Pressure," Kahn says there's a key difference in this case. Continue on for the legal merits of the case and a copy of the lawsuit.