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Lizzo Sued For Sampling Funeral Performance On "Coconut Oil"


She's put one lawsuit in the past, but there's another one on the way. A case was recently filed against Lizzo over her 2016 track "Coconut Oil," and Detroit News reports that the Motown-born star is accused of copying a gospel hymn for the song. According to the reports, Orlandus Dunning claims that Lizzo took the audio from a "mutual relative's funeral" and sampled it on the track "Coconut Oil" without approval.

Dunning addresses the lawsuit and says that he has "suffered pain, humiliation and outrage" over the ordeal and is asking for $750K in damages.

Both Lizzo and Atlantic Records are named in court papers along with "Nice Life Recording Co., an Atlantic subsidiary; and Warner Music Group Corp., which holds Atlantic." Dunning, who is reportedly an elder at the church where the funeral was held, states that the clip that Lizzo sampled was of his singing act at the event. He also says that he would have never allowed the sample because "Coconut Oil" and its message are "contradictory to his own brand and beliefs as an ordained elder."

"When Plaintiff sang the devotional, it was at a funeral and done for the specific purpose of uplifting his family and friends during their time of loss," states the claim. "Dunning had a reasonable expectation of privacy and that his view would not be heard openly, as the funeral where he sang was held confidentially and open only to family and close friends."

The Coconut Oil project was Lizzo's introduction EP that also hosted her hit single "Good as Hell," a song that received tons of recognition two years after its initial release.

Lizzo, 32, was born in Detroit but grew up in Houston. She currently resides in California, according to the lawsuit reports.

Last year, Lizzo was named Time's Entertainer of the Year and earned multiple honors at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards in 2020, including Best Pop Solo Performance, Urban Contemporary Album prize, and Traditional R&B Performance.





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