Home Drake faces legal action over AI diss track with Tupac

Drake faces legal action over AI diss track with Tupac

Superstar rapper Drake set the internet (or specifically, X) ablaze when he released a diss track featuring AI versions of Tupac Shakur and Snoop Dogg, but now the Canadian MC faces a legal challenge from Tupac’s estate.

“Taylor Made,” is a diss track aimed at fellow rapper Kendrick Lamar in an ongoing beef between the two music icons that has seen even Kanye West get drawn in.  The track features AI-generated vocals from the late hip-hop sensation Tupac Shakur and fellow West Coast legend Snoop Dogg.

The song, which dropped on April 19, 2024, was received playfully by Snoop Dogg who appeared unfazed in a video message, however, it has drawn the ire of Tupac’s team.

What is Tupac’s estate saying about Drake’s track?

According to Billboard, Tupac’s legal team, led by attorney Howard King, is threatening to take Drake to court over the unauthorized use of the late rapper’s voice. King called the move “a blatant abuse of the legacy of one of the greatest hip-hop artists of all time” and stated that the estate never granted permission for the use of Tupac’s vocals.

In a statement addressing the controversy, King expressed the estate’s disappointment and dismay at Drake’s actions. “The Estate is deeply dismayed and disappointed by your unauthorized use of Tupac’s voice and personality,” he said. “The Estate would never have given its approval for this use.”

“Taylor Made” not only takes shots at Lamar but also references pop superstar Taylor Swift, suggesting that her upcoming album release may overshadow the rappers’ ongoing feud.

While Snoop Dogg, whose AI-generated voice also appears on the track, seemed to react with amusement in a cryptic Instagram post featuring various emojis, Tupac’s estate is taking a more serious stance. They have demanded that Drake remove “Taylor Made” from the internet within 24 hours, with the looming threat of legal action if he fails to comply.

The threat must have been taken seriously by Drake as the “Taylor Made” diss was deleted from his X account on Thursday (Apr. 25).

The use of AI-generated vocals in music has become increasingly common on social media platforms, sparking discussions about artists’ rights and the potential misuse of their likenesses and advanced AI music generators like Suno have also caused concern in the industry.

Featured image: Flickr/musicisentropy

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Sam Shedden
Executive Editor

Sam Shedden is an experienced journalist and editor with over a decade of experience in online news. A seasoned technology writer and content strategist, he has contributed to many UK regional and national publications including The Scotsman, inews.co.uk, nationalworld.com, Edinburgh Evening News, The Daily Record and more. Sam has written and edited content for audiences whose interests include media, technology, AI, start-ups and innovation. He's also produced and set-up email newsletters in numerous specialist topics in previous roles and his work on newsletters saw him nominated as Newsletter Hero Of The Year at the UK's Publisher Newsletter Awards 2023. He…

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