Jay-Z is facing a serious legal challenge over the rights to a hook sampled on his 2000 hit “Big Pimpin’.” The nephew of Egyptian composer Baligh Hamdy is close to taking the rapper to court, claiming that he ruined his uncle’s song, “Khosara, Khosara,” and that his family has not been fairly compensated for its use as the lead instrumental motif in the hit.
A handful of Egyptian musicians have attempted to claim a valid license on “Khosara, Khosara” but have failed to substantiate their claim well enough to pursue a lawsuit. Much of the suit hinges on Egyptian copyright law, which confers economic ownership to authors as well as the ability to control what happens with the material. Though the song was licensed to Jay-Z, Hamdy’s family say that the rapper “mutilated” the source material and required more specific permission.
Osama Ahmed Fahmy, Hamdy’s nephew, is pushing to get a cut of Jay-Z’s revenue for the song prior to the 2007 filing of his lawsuit up until now, including a portion of the emcee’s concert profits.
In other Jay-Z news, the rapper is set to appear at the SXSW festival for the second year in a row. Jay-Z’s performance at Austin City Limits on March 12th will be live-streamed on YouTube as part of American Express’ Amex Sync Show promotion. The rapper performed at Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. showcase last year, where they debuted a song from their Watch the Throne album.