Udio, the AI company behind Metro Boomin's "BBL Drizzy" Drake diss track, has been sued by major record labels and the RIAA for alleged copyright infringement.

Major Labels and RIAA Sue AI Company Behind Metro Boomin's "BBL Drizzy"

On Monday (June 24), the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), announced they had filed two copyright infringement cases against AI music generation services, Suno and Udio. Metro Boomin's Drake disstrumental, "BBL Drizzy," was created using Udio's AI tool. Major record labels Sony Music, Warner Records and Universal Music Group are included as plaintiffs in the lawsuit since Udio and Suno allegedly infringed on copyrighted sound recordings that were copied and exploited without permission.

Users rely on programs like Suno and Udio to create AI music. During the heated rap battle between Kendrick Lamar and Drake that kicked off this past March, Metro Boomin and Drake had their own beef. The producer capitalized on Rick Ross' insulting nickname for the Toronto MC, "BBL Drizzy," by sampling an already existing AI-generated track with the same name. He turned the moment into a contest, in which the best verse on the 1970's-style soulful production would get $10,000 and a free Metro beat. A runner up would also receive a free beat. No winner has been announced yet.

The original AI track was created by comedian and AI creator Will "King Willonius" Hatcher. The soulful song includes a hook poking fun at Drake's allegedly augmented backside. The inspiration for the track's name came from Rick Ross, who had his own beef with Drake and insisted that the OVO leader got work down on his body.

Read More: Singer Sheryl Crow Says Drake's AI Use of Tupac Shakur's Likeness on 'Taylor Made Freestyle' Is Hateful

AI-Generated Music Is a Controversial Topic in Hip-Hop

Ask several rap fans their opinions on music made using AI and there is no unanimous response. Everyone has differing thoughts. While some people embrace it, like GHOST, who created the controversial Drake and The Weeknd AI track "Heart on My Sleeve" in 2023, others like producer Guru think it's dangerous. This year, Drake used AI voices of Tupac Shakur and Snoop Dogg in his Kendrick Lamar diss "Taylor Made Freestyle." Using artificial intelligence is a sign of the changing times, but it's also affecting the livelihood of the rappers who create the very music that AI infringes upon. More companies will jump on the AI bandwagon that Suno and Udio have already been riding, and the music industry will continue to fight for its artists' rights.

Udio Releases Statement After Being Sued

A day after RIAA announced the lawsuits, Udio released a statement on X, formerly known as Twitter. While they didn't address the lawsuit, the company stood by their technology.

"Today, we'd like to share some thoughts on AI and the future of music," the statement read. "In the past two years, AI has become a powerful tool for creative expression across many media—from text to images to film, and now music. At Udio, our mission is to empower artists of all kinds to create extraordinary music. In our young life as a company, we have sat in the studios of some of the world’s greatest musicians, workshopped lyrics with up-and-coming songwriters, and watched as millions of users created extraordinary new music, ranging from the funny to the profound."

Udio acknowledged that Metro Boomin sampled the AI-generated track "BBL Drizzy." "We have heard from a talented musician who, after losing the ability to use his hands, is now making music again," the statement continued. "Producers have sampled AI-generated tracks to create hit songs, like 'BBL Drizzy,' and everyday music-lovers have used the technology to express the gamut of human emotions from love to sorrow to joy. Groundbreaking technologies entail change and uncertainty."

"We stand behind our technology and believe that generative AI will become a mainstay of modern society," they added.

Suno Offers Statement After Being Sued

Suno CEO Mikey Shulman claims the record labels are relying on an "old lawyer-led playbook" instead of having a discussion with the company in a statement obtained by Music Business Worldwide.

"Suno's mission is to make it possible for everyone to make music," Shulman said. "Our technology is transformative; it is designed to generate completely new outputs, not to memorize and regurgitate pre-existing content. That is why we don't allow user prompts that reference specific artists."

He insisted Suno attempted to have a "good-faith discussion" with the labels before a lawsuit was filed. "We would have been happy to explain this to the corporate record labels that filed this lawsuit (and in fact, we tried to do so), but instead of entertaining a good faith discussion, they've reverted to their old lawyer-led playbook," he added. "Suno is built for new music, new uses, and new musicians. We prize originality."

RIAA Fires Back at Udio

On Wednesday (June 26), RIAA fired back at Udio's lengthy missive on X.

"If there is any takeaway from Udio's meandering 'response,' it is that Udio is attempting to construct an alternate reality where being pro-artist means stealing artists' work for profit," the statement begins. "In the reality everyone else is living in, artist advocate groups oppose what Udio is doing and strongly support these lawsuits. Supporting real creativity means getting permission before using someone's work and developing technology that partners with and supports human artists instead of cutting them out and replacing them. Music companies have already struck multiple partnerships with startups, entrepreneurs, and others with responsible applications of AI."

RIAA then called out Udio for admitting they copied music: "There is one surprising note of agreement: Udio now seems to admit their model copied 'a large collection of recorded music.' That's a startling admission of illegal and unethical conduct, and they should be held accountable."

Read More: Fans React to Drake Rapping Over Metro Boomin's 'BBL Drizzy' Beat

See Udio's statement in full and listen to Metro Boomin's "BBL Drizzy" Drake diss below.

Listen to Metro Boomin's "BBL Drizzy" Drake Disstrumental

See Udio's Response to Being Sued by Major Record Labels and RIAA

See a Rundown of All the Rap Beefs in 2024

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