US entertainer Childish Gambino is being sued for alleged copyright infringement, with the rapper Kidd Wes saying the Grammy-winning hit ‘This Is America’ was lifted from him.
According to US federal court documents Emelike Nwosuocha says the 2018 song from Donald Glover, whose alter ego is Childish Gambino, is “glaringly similar” to a song he released two years prior on Soundcloud.
The complaint filed in New York cites “nearly-identical unique rhythmic, lyrical, and thematic compositional and performance content contained in the chorus – or ‘hook’ – sections that are the centerpieces of both songs.”
‘This Is America’ in 2019 become the first rap song to win Grammys for best song and best record.
Nwosuocha says the flow of his song and Gambino’s are “unmistakably substantially similar, if not practically identical”.
He cited a musicologist he employed to compare the two tracks, who said “similarities in melodic contour, rhythmic triplet flow in each performance, and the lines Made in America and This is America are ‘likely not coincidences’.”
Nwosuocha is seeking a trial and damages, including for lost profits and opportunities.
Among the defendants named in the complaint are Gambino’s record label RCA, along with Roc Nation and the rapper Young Thug, who is credited as a writer and performing backing vocals.
Gambino has not publicly responded to the allegations.