Justin Bieber has been accused of many things over the course of his music career. As one of the biggest, most successful artists on the planet, you are always going to have a lot of eyes on you. However, while Bieber’s behavior has rubbed some the wrong way in the past, the latest imbroglio involving his name is not so much a matter of personal taste, but of musical authorship, because Bieber is being sued over his hit song “Sorry.”
Casey Dienel, who records music under the name White Hinterland, is suing both Bieber and Skrillex over “Sorry,” saying it unfairly rips off her 2014 song “Ring the Bell.” Specifically, Dienel’s lawsuit claims that “Sorry” duplicates the “the specific and unique characteristics of the female vocal riff” of “Ring the Bell.” Dienel made a substantive Facebook post on the subject, stating, in part:
“I offered Bieber’s team an opportunity to have a private dialogue about the infringement, but they refused to even acknowledge my claim, despite the obviousness of the sample. Justin Bieber is the world’s biggest artist, and I’m sure that he and his team will launch a full attack against me. But, in the end, I was left with no other option. I believe I have an obligation to stand up for my music and art.”
Dienel’s lawyers say she will have no further comment on the lawsuit. It seems that more of these lawsuits are happening these days, or perhaps it just feels like that because major songs, such as Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” and Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven,” are being subjected to such lawsuits. Obviously, this is a complicated matter, and there is a lot that needs to play out before any conclusion can be reached. As of now, neither Bieber nor Skrillex has made any comment, but stuff like this tends to take a long time, especially when it does — or doesn’t actually — go to trial.