Law360, New York (April 29, 2014, 6:17 PM ET) – A California federal judge on Monday agreed to award attorneys’ fees and costs to Madonna and others after their successful defense of a copyright suit over the 1990 hit single “Vogue,”.
U.S. District Judge Beverly Reid O’Connell said Madonna, producer Shep Pettibone and others were entitled to a total of $670,000 in fees and $50,055 in costs after winning a November ruling that plaintiff VMG Salsoul LLC couldn’t sue over a single horn chord allegedly sampled from the 1977 disco song “Love Break”.
“Having listened to the sound recordings of Chicago Bus Stop, Love Break and Vogue, the Court finds that no reasonable audience would find the sampled portions qualitatively or quantitatively significant in relation to the infringing work, nor would they recognize the appropriation, the Court finds that any sampling of the Horn Hit was de minimis or trivial.”
The plaintiff alleged that it was only through new technology that the “deliberately hidden” sampling had been detected.
In march, it was reported that american recording artist Moby is being sued by VMG over alleged unlicensed sample use from 22 year old recordings.