Reggaeton Star Feid Sued For ‘Flagrant’ Infringement on ‘Ferxxo 100’

June 11, 2024
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The hypnotic guitar loop that opens the wildly successful ballad “Ferxxo 100” by reggaeton superstar Feid is the subject of a new copyright infringement lawsuit filed by a Grammy-nominated producer who claims his work was sampled on three Feid songs without proper pay or credit.

Belgian producer Sébastien Julien Alfred Graux says in a new complaint filed Monday in federal court in California that Feid, along with co-producers Sky Rompiendo and Jowan, met him in face-to-face meetings in either Miami or Colombia before collaborating with him and knowingly sampling his work on the songs “Ferxxo 100,” “X20X” and “De Tanto Chimbiar.”

In his new 17-page filing, obtained by Rolling Stone, Graux alleges he hasn’t received any financial compensation or been given proper credit despite “months of reassurances” surrounding the songs’ release dates and years of wrangling. “Ferxxo 100” has received millions of streams online, with the ballad’s cinematic video attracting an eye-popping 245 million views on YouTube.

“Notwithstanding defendants’ willful infringement and broken promises, Graux attempted to resolve this dispute outside of litigation. However, those attempts were wholly unsuccessful, necessitating the present action,” the new lawsuit, which also names Universal Music Group and Colombia-based Icon Music as defendants, states. (Representatives for Feid and Universal did not respond to a request for comment. Attempts to reach Sky and Jowan were not immediately successful.)

Graux says he was “ecstatic” when he first learned his copyrighted work would be featured on the three songs. He claims he received guarantees from Jowan and others associated with the songs that he would be “appropriately” credited as a co-producer and composer and receive a royalty split. His loops have appeared in songs by other well-established artists including Ricky Martin, Farruko, Rema, Don Toliver and NBA YoungBoy, so he believed there was a measure of industry goodwill when he shared a selection of copyrighted audio files with Jowan and Sky Rompiendo in late 2021 and early 2022, his lawsuit states.

Graux alleges Jowan contacted him in May 2022, letting him know “Ferxxo 100” was about to be released and requesting information for registration of the song. When the song dropped on June 1, 2022, it “directly” sampled Graux’s copyrighted guitar loop “Sad Crab” with “very limited changes” but no credit to Graux, the lawsuit alleges. According to the complaint, Jowan, whose full name is Johan Esteban Espinosa Cuervo, told Graux that he would work to “correct the credit error” and that while a royalty split had not been signed, Graux was due to receive a 10 percent split in the song.

“Not suspecting any impropriety yet, Graux thanked Jowan for keeping him informed and working to correct the error. Thinking the errors would soon be corrected, Graux then told Jowan to calm down and celebrate the song’s release. Jowan ended the conversation by thanking Graux for contributing his talent to the song,” the lawsuit states. “Upon information and belief, defendants had no intention of giving Graux a co-producer credit or a 10 percent split, as promised by Jowan, and Jowan’s statements were meant to placate Graux to avoid any delays to the song and album release schedule.”

According to the lawsuit, Graux later messaged Sky Rompiendo, whose full name is Alejandro Ramírez Suárez, on August 1, 2022, asking for help with his proper credit on “Ferxxo 100.” Sky was listed alongside Jowan as a co-producer of the song, and the artists had discussed other collaborations. “My brother how are you. That will have to do with your lawyer my brother. I didn’t put you in the song so I don’t know how things were done. I’m just part of it,” Sky responded, according to the complaint.

Graux says it “became clear” that the producer had no intention of “freely giving him the credit and compensation he deserved,” so he asked his management team to get involved before the release of the next song. He claims that on September 1, 2022, the same day that the non-album single “De Tanto Chimbiar” was released, representatives for Feid and Universal emailed Graux’s team to “finally propose” terms of a split for “Ferxxo 100” and “De Tanto Chimbiar.” He says the proposal called for him to receive one-time payments of $1,000, a songwriting credit, and author royalties – but no master points or producer credits.  Graux countered, asking for a 10 percent composer split and a 1 percent royalty as co-producer. He says “X20X” was released on September 14, 2022 featuring his copyrighted guitar loop “San Juan” without his permission, proper crediting or compensation.

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Graux says in his lawsuit that he has yet to receive any compensation for the three songs “despite years of promises,” so he’s now seeking “damages stemming from defendants’ flagrant and purposeful infringement.”

Feid, aka Ferxxo, is currently on his Ferxxocalipsis World Tour, with a show set for Sunday at New York City’s Madison Square Garden. The headlining tour, which started in April, follows the release of Ferxxocalipsis, the 10-track album Feid surprise released in December. “I’m thankful to everyone that was a part of this, Colombia has so much to show and this is just another piece of that!!!” he wrote on Instagram ahead of the project’s release.





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