ARTY’s copyright lawsuit against Marshmello has been rejected.
The suit filed back in 2019 claimed Marshmello and his massive 2018 hit “Happier” ripped off the melody from ARTY’s 2014 remix for OneRepublic’s “I Lived.” More on the original complaint here.
There’s an interesting facet in this case, as ARTY signed away his rights to the music when he agreed to do the remix. The producer was paid a flat fee for his work in lieu of receiving any royalties.
According to Variety, ARTY’s contract stated:
I acknowledge and agree that the services rendered (or to be rendered) by Remixer hereunder do not entitle Remixer or me to any ownership or financial interest in the underlying musical composition.
ARTY’s representation argued the “underlying musical composition” meant he gave up the rights to the original composition, but not the remix. Marshmello’s team argued any rights to the remix were indeed waived.
Last Thursday, U.S. District Judge Philip S. Gutierrez ultimately ruled in favor of Marshmello:
From the terms of the contract it is clear that Plaintiff disclaimed ‘any ownership or financial interest’ in the Remix Composition. As such, Defendants are entitled to summary judgment on Plaintiff’s infringement claims because Plaintiff disclaimed his ownership and financial interests in the Arty Elements.
ARTY was notably represented by Richard Busch, the same attorney who represented Marvin Gaye’s family in the famous “Blurred Lines” case.
Marshmello was represented by Robert Jacobs of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips LLP.