May 21, 2024

Donna Summer’s Estate Settles With Ye Over AI Theft Dispute

Donna Summer’s estate has reached a settlement with Kanye “Ye” West and Ty Dolla $ign over claims that they unlawfully used Summer’s classic hit “I Feel Love.” 

According to Rolling Stone, the settlement comes after the estate accused the artists of “blatant theft” in their song “Good (Don’t Die)” from the album Vultures 1.

Legal Battle and Settlement

The lawsuit, filed in February by Summer’s estate, alleged that West and Ty Dolla $ign, whose legal name is Tyrone Griffin Jr., copied significant portions of Summer’s iconic track without permission.

The legal complaint detailed how West and Griffin sought permission to use “I Feel Love” but were explicitly denied. 

Despite this, they allegedly went ahead and re-recorded “almost verbatim” the most memorable parts of the song. 

The estate’s Instagram story alleged that West had someone re-sing it or used AI to replicate the song.

As a result, streaming platforms like Spotify and Apple Music pulled the infringing track shortly after its release.

Settlement Terms and Future Implications

In a court filing obtained by Rolling Stone, a lawyer for Summer’s estate confirmed that a “global settlement” was reached on May 3, and signatures were being gathered to finalize the agreement. 

While specific details of the settlement were not disclosed, the filing stated that the parties anticipated completing the agreement shortly and filing for dismissal of the action in its entirety by June 14, 2024.

Image credits:  Francesco Scavullo/ Casablanca Records and David Shankbone

Samara Linton

Community Manager at POCIT | Co-editor of The Colour of Madness: Mental Health and Race in Technicolour (2022), and co-author of Diane Abbott: The Authorised Biography (2020)