Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars‘ “Uptown Funk” is at the center of a new royalties lawsuit.
Billboard reports family members of the Gap Band, who were credited as the song’s co-writers in 2015, are suing BMG Rights Management for reportedly not paying them royalties.
The suit was filed Thursday by the families of Robert and Ronnie Wilson in Manhattan federal court. They say a 2015 deal allowed them to collect royalties because “Uptown Funk” samples the Gap Band’s 1979 single “I Don’t Believe You Want to Get Up and Dance (Oops Upside Your Head).” The deal allegedly allowed them to collect a 3.4 percent stake in the song’s profits.
They are accusing BMG of breach of contract. The lawsuit states, in part, “Despite its obligations to account for and pay to plaintiffs their share of all income received from the Uptown Funk musical composition, BMG has refused and failed to provide either the funds due to plaintiffs or an accounting despite plaintiffs’ repeated demands.”
Attorney Michael Steger, who represents the family, said the family had been trying for years to come to a resolution and were ultimately “left with no choice but to pursue litigation to protect their rights.”
Neither Bruno nor Mark Ronson are named in the suit.
Representatives for BMG did not respond to the outlet’s request for comment.
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