The estate of Anthony Barré, who went by the stage name Messy Mya, filed a lawsuit against the pop singer, claiming she used a snippet of Barré’s voice in her hit song without his permission. Barré was a YouTube celebrity who was shot and killed in 2010.
The snippet in question ― “Oh, yes, I like that” ― comes from Barré’s 2010 video “A 27-Piece Huh?” It can be heard at about the 1-minute mark in Beyoncé’s “Formation” video. You can also hear Barré’s voice at the very beginning, asking, “What happened after New Orleans?” and saying, “B***h, I’m back, by popular demand.” (Those snippets came from another 2010 video, titled “Booking The Hoes From New Wildin.”)
Here’s Barré’s video, for reference:
According to TMZ, the estate claims a representative tried to contact Beyoncé about the sample, but nothing came of it. Of course, “Formation” went on to become a massive hit, and, as the outlet notes, it’s certified gold.
Barré’s estate is reportedly asking for over $20 million in royalties and other damages because the recording features some of the late rapper’s last recorded words. The video was uploaded about a month before Barré’s death.
Interestingly, this isn’t the first lawsuit to come out of “Lemonade.” Last year, independent filmmaker Matthew Fulks sued Beyoncé over the visual album’s trailer, which he claimed she had stolen from his short film “Palinoia.” However, a New York judge dismissed the lawsuit.
The Huffington Post has reached out to Beyoncé’s representatives for comment and will update this post accordingly.
This post has been updated to include more information about the sample.