St. Louis gospel rapper named in lawsuit against Katy Perry

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – Did pop singer Katy Perry steal a song from a St. Louis Christian hip-hop artist?  That is the claim in a lawsuit filed in St. Louis federal court.

Marcus Gray of St. Louis who goes by the name “Flame” is a Christian hip-hop musician and songwriter.  Chike Ojukwu is another St. Louis Christian hip-hop artist.  Both men and two other songwriters who live elsewhere claim Katy Perry ripped off their song.

The lawsuit claims that Perry’s 2013 hit song “Dark Horse” Infringes on their copyright of a 2008 song, “Joyful Noise.”  It says Perry not only hijacked their religious music, she also destroyed their reputation in the Christian music world.  The men say they’re now associated with anti-Christian witchcraft and imagery that appears in the “Dark Horse” music video.

The Christian performers built their case within the last couple of months after seeing comparisons of the song online. The lawsuit doesn’t go into much detail about how the song “Joyful Noise” was used to create Perry’s Dark Horse. But, we have learned that Christian hip-hop artists claim that the Dark Horse’s repeating music pattern is unmistakably the same music pattern from their song Joyful Noise.

One of Flame’s St. Louis lawyers, Michael Kahn, says it is that same repeating music pattern that was used in perry’s song Dark Horse. The lawsuit seeks a jury trial, unspecified monetary damages and calls for Perry to stop using the song.  So far no comment from Katy Perry’s publicist.


“Joyful Noise”

Katy Perry’s “Dark Horse”

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