Former Sauti sol signee Crystal Asige has taken renowned boy band members of Sauti Sol to court over an alleged breach of contract.
The nominated Senator through her lawyers wants the court to compel the band members to disclose how much they have received from hit songs ‘Lenga’, ‘Extravaganza’, ‘Ukiwa Mbali’, intro and ‘Favourite’ Songs from 2019 which she was involved in producing.
At the same time, Asige is seeking orders impelling Sauti Sol to deliver all licensing information on the songs she is aggrieved about and also urging the court to order Sauti Sol to compensate her for the songs she was involved in.
The lawsuit filed by her lawyers Mwakireti and Asige Advocates, read in part, “While under the first defendant’s record label, the plaintiff co-composed and performed on the widely known recordings ‘Extravaganza’ and ‘Ukiwa Mbali’ together with the second to fifth defendants, and her then label mates, professionally known as Bensoul, Nviiri the Story Teller and the group Kaskazini in 2019 and her contribution was credited as such.”
According to court documents, Crystal also says she arranged and performed background vocals on Bensoul’s song “Favourite Song” in 2019 and that her own song “Lenga” which she composed, was released on KLM’s Facebook platform “without her consent”.
“Additionally, the plaintiff’s original composition was taken from her and recorded as the sound recording titled ‘Intro’ and featured in the second to the fifth defendant’s latest studio album titled ‘Midnight train’ without her knowledge or consent and released in June 2020 on worldwide digital streaming platforms and social media and she was accredited as co-author of said song,” reads Asige’s court papers.
Asige also alleges that after the release of the ‘Extravaganza’ video, Bien-Aime Baraza informed her that he wanted her to sign a full recording contract following the song’s popularity.
“The plaintiff communicated her reservations on the aforementioned agreement with the first defendant and requested to discuss and negotiate the particulars,” she claims.
Unfortunately according to the legislator, the two parties have never met for negotiations.
“On November 7, 2019, the plaintiff was invited for a meeting with the second defendant (Bien-Aime ), Natasha Qubu (first defendant’s manager) Moriasi Omambia (first defendant’s legal manager and shareholder) and informed that the first defendant (Sol Generation) no longer wanted to continue with the plaintiff at the label, initially citing that the first defendant was ‘flat broke’ with no resources to keep her,” she added.
She alleges that in the meeting, it was agreed that she would keep full master recording rights for Lenga. Asige says she authored, composed, co-produced and performed the hit song, therefore, is entitled to copyright.
“The plaintiff was further informed that the first respondent was receiving a significant cash deposit of approximately Sh5 million from the sixth defendant (KLM) for use of her Lenga song,” she claims.
However, Sauti Sol band member Bien has broken his silence about the lawsuit; while speaking to Mpasho’s writer Elizabeth Ngigi, Bien said the band is ready to meet the now-nominated senator who is representing persons living with disabilities, in court.
“Let us meet in court and put all our documents on the table. We can only follow the path she has chosen. Those matters can be well handled in court just like she has done,” Bien stated.
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