It’s another win for Drake. Yesterday, the Toronto rapper came out the victor in a longstanding copyright infringement lawsuit brought by the estate of jazz musician Jimmy Smith, over his song “Pound Cake/Paris Morton Music 2” from the 2013 album Nothing Was The Same. At the heart of the case was Drake’s use of Smith’s spoken word recording, “Jimmy Smith Rap,” from 1982 that Drizzy sampled as the intro for his own track.
The judge ultimately sided with Drake’s lawyers argument regarding fair use. In the original, Smith says, “Jazz is the only real music that’s gonna last. All that other bullsh*t is here today and gone tomorrow. But jazz was, is and always will be.” For the Drake track, that sentiment was cut down so that he says, “Only real music’s gonna last,” states the sampled portion in Drake’s track. “All that other bullsh*t is here today and gone tomorrow.”
According to the Hollywood Reporter, District Court judge William H. Pauley III ruled that Smith’s song “is an unequivocal statement on the primacy of jazz over all other forms of popular music,” whereas Drake, “transforms Jimmy Smith’s brazen dismissal of all non-jazz music into a statement that ‘real music,’ with no qualifiers, is ‘the only thing that’s gonna last.'” Adding, “This is precisely the type of use that ‘adds something new, with a further purpose or different character, altering the first [work] with new expression, meaning or message.”
You legal eagles can read the Judge’s full opinion here.