Chris Brown and Drake Argue Copyright Infringement Lawsuit Over "No Guidance" Is 'Baseless'
An attorney for Chris Brown and Drake responded to the copyright infringement lawsuit over Breezy's 2019 song "No Guidance," calling it "baseless."
Image via Getty/Vivien Killilea
Drake and Chris Brown have both said the copyright infringement lawsuit over their 2019 song “No Guidance” is “baseless.”
Billboard reports the two musicians are also requesting a federal judge to dismiss the suit. Filed by Brandon Cooper and Timothy Valentine in October, the two claimed the superstars took their own 2016 song “I Love Your Dress” and made “No Guidance.”
Among the elements Cooper and Valentine allege Brown and Drake stole was the hook “you got it.” The attorney representing Drizzy and Breezy, James G. Sammataro, rejected the allegations, saying the phrase is too prevalent to be within the realm of copyright law.
“Plaintiffs’ suit is premised upon the alleged similarity [to a] wholly generic lyrical phrase,” Sammataro wrote. “No one, including plaintiffs, can own or monopolize the non-copyrightable phrase ‘you got it,’ and it should come as no surprise that this phrase appears in countless other works.”
In October, Cooper and Valentine’s complaint also listed a number of other similarities between the songs, saying Drake and Brown’s track “was copied” or “derived” from “the beat, lyrics, hook, rhythmic structure, metrical placement, and narrative context” of “I Love Your Dress.”
Sammataro rejected that notion in his response as well. “The Court can hear for itself that the total concept and feel of the songs is vastly different,” Sammataro wrote. “Plaintiffs’ song is a slow, R&B love ballad about the writer’s wife featuring one vocalist and relatively few lyrics. In sharp contrast, ‘No Guidance’ is a faster, longer, and sexually explicit rap and R&B song about a new romantic interest.”
Additionally, Sammataro pointed out that Cooper and Valentine couldn’t prove Brown and Drake ever came across their song, which is obligatory in a copyright infringement case, saying the suit is based on “speculative allegations.”
The Drake-featuring “No Guidance” appeared on Chris Brown’s June 2019 album Indigo. The song peaked at No. 5 in October 2019 and was later nominated for Best R&B Song at the Grammys.