Jay Z testified in court yesterday (October 14) in the lawsuit regarding the rights to the sample used in his “Big Pimpin'” song, the Associated Press reports.
The Rap mogul spent 90 minutes detailing his life and music career. He cited the liner notes in his Vol. 3… Life and Times of S. Carter as evidence that he and producer Timbaland legally used the Egyptian song “Khosara, Khosara” for the sample. A book that he had written about his lyrics was also allowed as evidence in the case, which was filed by the family of Baligh Hamdi who composed “Khosara, Khosara.”
Jay Z answered a series of “yes” or “no” questions about securing the rights to the song after “Big Pimpin'” was published.
A music expert determined that “Big Pimpin'” uses and repeats four of the 74 notes from “Khosara, Khosara.”
Days after Jay Z requested that his “Big Pimpin’” copyright infringement trial be delayed, the trial has officially begun in Los Angeles.
U.S. News reports that the trial began on Tuesday (October 13), with Jay Z reportedly defending himself.
According to the website, the first day of trial began with an attorney representing the heirs of Egyptian composer Baligh Hamdi, accusing Jay Z and Timbaland of misusing Hamdi’s “Khosara, Khosara” on “Big Pimpin’”.
The family’s lawyer, Pete Ross, stated that Jay Z and Timbaland, who serves as producer on “Big Pimpin’”, didn’t receive permission to sample “Khosara, Khosara.” Both musicians have stated the opposite.
According to Timbaland, he initially thought the parts of “Khosara, Khosara” he used were royalty-free, and despite that assumption, he says he still secured the appropriate rights.
“Timbaland, whose real name is Timothy Mosely, also attended the opening of the trial,” U.S. News reports. “His attorney, Christine Lepera, told jurors that he initially used elements of Hamdi’s work thinking it was royalty-free, but he later secured the appropriate rights. Ross disputes that statement, and he accused the men of violating Hamdi’s ‘moral rights,’ a legal concept he said is well-established in Egypt that would have required them to get permission to use elements of ‘Khosara, Khosara’ in a song celebrating a promiscuous lifestyle.”
The lawsuit against Jay Z and Timbaland has been in the works for several years now. In 2012, a judge deemed that whether or not the family of Hamdi should receive a portion of Jay Z’s concert revenue was a triable issue.