Published Apr 20, 2011Though Death Row Records initially released Dr. Dre's iconic The Chronic album in the early '90s, a recent court ruling has declared the label has lost the digital rights to the record. Last year, Dr. Dre (born Andre Young) filed a lawsuit against the label claiming he was not receiving his due royalties for digital sales. Yesterday (April 19), a U.S. federal judge agreed, ruling in favour of the rapper.
While the ruling does not prevent WIDEawake, who bought Death Row Records in 2009, from selling the album, it does entitle Dre to 100 percent of the proceeds of online sales. Also, Death Row no longer has the right to license any of The Chronic material without the rapper's permission. The label can, however, still release the album physically.
"For years, Death Row Records forgot about Dre when they continued to distribute his music digitally and combined his hits with weaker Death Row tracks in an attempt to elevate the stature of their other artists," Dre's lawyer, Howard King, said in a statement. "We are gratified that the federal court has unambiguously declared that Death Row has no right to engage in such tactics, and must hold all proceeds from these illicit distributions in trust for our client."
This is a huge victory for Dr. Dre. Hopefully, his next triumph is releasing Detox.
Thanks to Billboard for the tip.