Yasminah, a Somali-American poet, songwriter and musician accused the Canadian Singer The Weeknd and his producer Daft Punk of infringement for using one of her songs to create their hit song ‘Starboy’ which was released in 2016.
‘Yasminah’ claimed in a suit filed at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York on September 18, that the defendants ripped off her song ‘Hooyo’.
She also alleged her record producers of breach of contract and is seeking punitive damages from them.
According to the suit filed, Yasminah released her song in 2009 which became popular with the eastern African diaspora. Yasminah stated that The Weeknd had heard her sound recording/compositions and had access to them. She blames the defendants for copying the quantitatively and qualitatively distinct, important and recognisable portions of her song. To support her claim, she mentioned a Buzzfeed article, along with the YouTube videos and tweets that question the similarity between her song and ‘Starboy’.
Yasminah accused her own record label, The Squad along with the producers William Uschold and Tyrone Dangerfeild. According to Yasminah her producers went for a settlement against The Weekend’s Starboy, however she claims that she was left out of the settlement by her producers.
Yasminah seeks a permanent injunction against The Weekend and Daft Punk, statutory damages, the profit made by the song ‘Starboy’ along with $5 million from the defendants for allegedly aiding and abetting of breach of fiduciary duty.