Snoop "Slapp'd" With Lawsuit

Rapper sued over answering machine sample

March 26, 2003 12:00 PM ET

Rapper Snoop Dogg (real name Calvin Broadus) was slapped with a lawsuit Tuesday for allegedly using an answering machine message by an unnamed man in his song "Pimp Slapp'd" from 2002's Paid tha Cost to Be da Boss.

A man identified only as "John Doe" claims that he left a one-minute private message on Snoop's answering machine in October 2002, voicing his support of Snoop in his feud with his former label boss Marion "Suge" Knight, of Tha Row (formerly Death Row Records).

Snoop tacked the message, which identified the caller by his known nickname "Jim Bob," onto the end of "Pimp Slapp'd." Doe claims that when he confronted Snoop about the song the rapper told him that he had to use the message because "it was so real."

Doe is suing Snoop for common law appropriation of voice and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Priority Records and Doggy Style Records, which released the album in November 2002, are also named as defendants. He is seeking injunctive relief requiring that his message be taken off the albums and singles currently on sale and on any future pressings of the song.

According to the suit, which was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, the plaintiff is remaining anonymous because he fears for his safety. "Plaintiff now fears for his life and that of his elderly mother," the suit reads, "because it appears that he, as a Compton resident (where a rival of Broadus, Suge Knight, apparently has a lot of 'pull' and is feared), is supporting Broadus in the turf war. Mr. Knight, a burly, convicted felon, is rumored to be involved with gangs, to threaten, assault, and hurt people."

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