Obrafour, Drake & Mantse conundrum: Baba Sadiq writes

Obrafour, Drake & Mantse conundrum: Baba Sadiq writes

Following the Obrafour vrs Drake vrs Mantse IP issues carefully. I am noticing some of the emotions at play and the usual take devoid of sound legal reasoning and case studies to back it up. 

Someone wondered if Mantse indeed has the locus to claim his composition on the recording owned by Execution Entertainment/Obrafour? Others thought he couldn’t have because he was paid etc. 

Anybody that followed the Taylor Swift, Big Time Machine case which is almost similar to this as it relates to asserting one’ compositional right will admit, Mantse whether paid or not can lay a proper claim to the composition of that aspect of the recording which Execution Entertainment/Obrafour owns. That composition “Killer cut blood” is his. He composed and performed it. 

The Taylor Swift, big Time Machine case asserts the composer’s rights associated with the underlying composition – the performance royalties, in addition to the mechanical royalties even though the owner of the sound recording in this case Execution Entertainment/Obrafour retains the rights to monetize, distribute, and license that specific recording, regardless of who wrote the song. 

Execution/Obrafour owns the entire recording, however, the element of the recording in contention is that which was composed and performed by Mantse. So it’s best practice to regard Mantse as a composer of that aspect of the recording owned by Execution Entertainment/Obrafour because he composed and performed it. So he is actually on a good path regardless of how we think he should have approached it. The approach can be subjective and a matter of choice, not our emotions to be fair to him. 

Perhaps it’s time to re-route the narrative of the industry through thoughtful and informative content as I have consistently maintained. No industry can be enabled without thought leadership. This is another opportunity to do better and elevate the discourse for the good of the industry.

Further readings particularly the Sisqó vrs the Composer of Ricky Martin’s “Living la Vida loca” confirms that, unless otherwise directed by Mantse, Execution Entertainment/Obrafour can not claim compensation on behalf of Mantse as the composer of that piece in the recording which is a bone of contention. Mantse however and on his own can claim compensation for that piece without recourse to Obrafour. 

Per the attached link and in the Ricky Martin case, the actual beneficiary in that case isn’t Ricky Martin who performed the recording but Desmond Child, the composer of the song. Ricky Martin and the record label that owned the Masters didn’t have a right and couldn’t have claimed the compensation like Obrafour is doing. 

Emotions aside and If The Taylor Swift vrs Big Time Machine and the Sisqó vrs Desmond Child case are anything to go by, the rightful beneficiary of the compensation and the one with the actual right of claim is Mantse, the composer of the sampled piece and not Obrafour. Read this carefully, let’s talk more about it. 

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