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Songwriter wins $44 million in dispute over Usher song

By | Published on Monday 22 October 2018


A songwriter in Philadelphia has won $44 million in a dispute over the Usher track ‘Bad Girl’, which appeared on the 2004 album ‘Confessions’.

Writer Daniel Marino sued two former collaborators – William Guice and Dante Barton – in a dispute over the song. Both Guice and Barton are among the legion of people who get a co-writing credit on the Usher track.

Marino argued that he also made a significant contribution to the original song, which at that point was called ‘Club Girl’. His contribution, legal papers argued, included the guitar hook, tempo and chord progression. But he was denied a co-writer credit and his cut of the royalties when Usher recorded his version of the work.

According to the Associated Press, a jury last week ordered Guice to pay $6.75 million in compensatory damages and an additional $20.25 million in punitive damages. Meanwhile Barton, via his company Destro Music Productions, will now pay Marino damages of $17.35 million, bringing the total pay-out to the rather large $44.35 million figure.

Usher himself was not part of the dispute, despite also being listed as a co-writer on the final version of the song.