The Sauti Sol band members have been sued by former signee Crystal Asige for alleged breach of contract.
Ms Asige wants court to compel artists to disclose how much they received from hit songs Lenga, Extravagance, Ukiwa Mbali, Intro and Favorite song from 2019.
At the same time, Asige also urges the court to order Sauti Sol to compensate him.
She is also asking for orders that they provide all licensing information on the songs she is aggrieved about.
Crystal Asige sued Sol Generation Records Limited, Bien-Aime Baraza, Polycarp Otieno, Willis Chimano, Delvin Mudigi and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Kenya.
Sauti Sol is known for his hit songs such as Short and Sweet, Melanin and Extravaganza among others.
In her court documents, Asige says she is a visually impaired composer, performer and producer.
According to her, in 2018 she was living in Mombasa when Baraza allegedly asked her to join Sol Records in order to write and produce a song.
She claims she was the only female and disabled person on the label.
“While under the First Defendant’s label, Plaintiff co-composed and performed on the widely known ‘Extravaganza’ and ‘Ukiwa Mbali’ recordings with Defendants Second through Fifth, and his then-label mates , professionally known as Bensoul, Nviiri the Story Teller and the Kaskazini group in 2019 and his contribution has been credited as such,” she asserts.
Asige also claims that she arranged and performed background vocals on Bensoul’s 2019 song “Favorite Song”.
She says she composed her own sound recording called “Lenga” which was released exclusively on KLM’s Facebook platform. She claims the deal between the airline and Sol Generation was without her blessing.
“Furthermore, Complainant’s original composition was taken from her and recorded as a sound recording titled ‘Intro’ and featured in Defendant’s second through fifth studio album titled ‘Midnight Train’ without Complainant’s knowledge or without her consent and released in June 2020 on global digital streaming platforms and social media and she has been accredited as a co-author of said song,” read in part Asige’s court documents filed by Mwakireti and Asige Advocates. .
She alleges that after the ‘Extravaganza’ video was released, Bien-Aime informed her that he wanted her to sign a full recording contract following the song’s popularity.
“The plaintiff communicated its reservations about the aforementioned agreement with the first defendant and asked to discuss and negotiate the details,” she claims.
They never met for negotiations, according to Asige.
It continues: “On November 7, 2019, the plaintiff was called to a meeting with the second defendant (Bien-Aime), Natasha Qubu (manager of the first defendant) Moriasi Omambia (manager and shareholder of the first defendant) and informed that the first defendant (Sol Generation) did not want to continue with the plaintiff on the label, initially citing that the first defendant was “destitute” and had no resources to keep her.
She alleges that at the meeting it was agreed that she would retain all master recording rights for Lenga. Asige says she wrote, composed, co-produced and performed the hit song, therefore, is entitled to copyright.
“The plaintiff was further informed that the first defendant was receiving a large cash deposit of approximately 5 million shillings from the sixth defendant (KLM) for the use of his song Lenga,” she claims.