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Nicki Minaj To Testify On Behalf Of Brother In Child Molestation Case

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Nicki is catching a little fire after Pitchfork announced that she will be taking the stand on her brother’s behalf.

Maraj plead not guilty after being indicted of felony sexual assault against a child in April of 2016. According to the lawyer, he intends to make the argument that the alleged victim and her mother tried to “shake down” Nicki to the tune of $25 million “to make the charges go away.”

My Opinion…..Well…it’s complicated. One on hand we know you have to go to bat for your family, and hold them down through whatever. On the other hand, how does she defend her brother when it’s possible that he could be guilty of raping little girls, and your brand is built on female empowerment. I get the whole, “shake down” thing, but if you ask me, does Nicki even have 25M? I know everyone wants to believe she is worth 70M because of those net worth sites…but after lawyer fees, accountants, managers and all that, how much is she really left with? I guess we can only sit back and wait to see what happens.

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Celebs

Timbaland & Swizz Beatz Sue Triller, Claiming $28M Never Paid From ‘Verzuz’ Sale

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The TikTok rival bought the popular livestream show last year, but its founders now say Triller still owes them tens of millions.

BY BILL DONAHUE (Billboard)

Eighteen months after Timbaland and Swizz Beatz sold their popular Verzuz livestream series to Triller, the two are now suing the social media platform for allegedly failing to pay them a whopping $28 million that they’re still owed from the deal.

Triller, a TikTok-like service that allows users to create and share short videos, announced in March 2021 that it would pay an undisclosed sum in cash and equity to acquire Verzuz – a breakout hit during the pandemic in which two artists square off in a livestreamed music battle.

But in a lawsuit filed Tuesday (Aug. 16) in Los Angeles Superior Court, Timbaland (Timothy Mosley) and Swizz Beatz (Kasseem Daoud Dean) say Triller has failed to actually pay for the company it purchased. After initial payments last year and early this year, the pair of hitmakers say the company has refused to hand over more than $28 million that they’re still owed.

“Defendants have failed and refused to respond to plaintiffs’ written notice and demand for payment,” the pair’s lawyers wrote in the complaint. “To date, defendants have failed and refused to make any payment to Mosley and Dean of the past due sums due and owing, and defendants continue in default of their payment obligations.”

A representative for Triller did not immediately return a request for comment from Billboard.

Timbaland and Swizz Beatz launched Verzuz in March 2020, just days after the global shut-down from the COVID-19 pandemic, and it took off as peak quarantine entertainment – a virtual music battle between top artists, livestreamed to millions of users on Instagram and other platforms. Since the pair of producers squared off in the inaugural show, Verzuz has featured high-profile showdowns between T-Pain and Lil Jon, Alicia Keys and John Legend, DMX and Snoop Dogg, Brandy and Monica, and many other top names, often drawing millions of viewers.

After launching in 2015, Triller rose to prominence in 2020 as a competitor to TikTok when the Trump administration said it was considering banning the popular social media service from the U.S. market over its ties to the Chinese government. Triller — whose investors include Snoop Dogg, The Weeknd and Marshmello — made aggressive moves to compete with TikTok by courting influencers to the platform, but also experienced serious hiccups. Universal Music Group, the world’s largest music company, pulled its catalog from the platform in February 2021 over royalty issues before eventually resolving the matter and restoring the songs a few months later. The service also admitted to — and then denied — inflating user numbers just weeks before it was expected to go public as part of a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) merger.

The SPAC merger didn’t happen, but recently Triller has been making another play to go public — meaning the Verzuz lawsuit is coming at a particularly bad time. After calling off a $5 billion proposed merger with video-tech company SeaChange International in June, the company submitted paperwork to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering.

According to Wednesday’s lawsuit, under the terms of Triller’s deal to buy Verzuz, the first cash payments to Timbaland and Swizz Beatz were due January 2021 and April 2021 – both of which Triller successfully made. But when another payment was due in January 2022, the producers say the company failed to pay.

The two sides quickly reached a settlement to avert a dispute by agreeing to a new payment plan, the suit says, and Triller made the first payment under that new agreement in February. But the settlement agreement required Triller to pay another $18 million by March 17, plus $1 million more per month for another 10 months – and Timbaland and Swizz Beatz say those payments have never been made.

“The aforesaid defaults constitute material breaches of the agreement by defendants,” the pair’s lawyers wrote. “By reason of defendants’ continuing uncured defaults, the sum of $28,095,000.00 is immediately due to be paid under the agreement.”

The lawsuit from Timbaland and Swizz Beatz isn’t the first time this year Triller has been accused of not paying its bills. In June, boxing reporter Dan Rafael reported that Triller had not fully paid several fighters from a May 2022 bout. And earlier this month, The Washington Post reported that Triller had a spotty history of paying Black influencers that had been recruited to join the platform; the company strongly denied those allegations.

It’s also not the first sign of tension between Timbaland/Swizz Beatz and Triller. Back in February, Verzuz faced backlash when it was announced that the latest battle would be exclusively aired on Triller’s $2.99-per-month premium service. Later in the day, Swizz Beatz assured fans that the show would still be available on Instagram and other free platforms: “I was out of the country don’t ask me who did it,” he wrote with a laughing emoji. “It’s fixed.”

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Celebs

Trey Songz Arrested At Chiefs Game

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Trey Songz was in a physical altercation with a police officer during the KC Chiefs’ game, and fans who witnessed it say the cop was way out of line.

TMZ obtained the video from Arrowhead Stadium Sunday, which — at first — shows Trey and the officer in a struggle. Trey connects a punch with the officer’s head, and gets him in a headlock, but then the officer pins Trey to a seat.

A witness says the whole thing started when Trey was being heckled by some fans a few rows behind him and he asked them to chill out. We’re told the officer approached Trey, and without warning, went after him. The witness says Trey was totally caught off guard when the officer got physical, and started to defend himself.

You can hear fans throughout the video shout at the officer, telling him to get off Songz until additional officers arrived. Fans were yelling for the officer to be arrested.

Once backup got there, they were able to separate Trey and the cop … and they put Trey in handcuffs.

A law enforcement source tells TMZ … Songz was arrested for trespassing, resisting arrest — both misdemeanors — and for assaulting a police officer … a low-grade felony. We’re told he’s on a 24-hour hold, and will likely be released Monday night.

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Celebs

Carl Crawford Speaks Out About The Megan Thee Stallion Situation

Things are heating up as Carl Crawford speaks out about his deal with Megan Thee Stallion, and how she may not be as much as a victim as she claims.

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CATCH UP: Megan Thee Stallion has went public about the unfair deal that she signed when she was 20 and just getting started. She states that when entering the deal she didn’t comprehend everything in the contract, BUT she signed it anyways. After signing with Roc Nation back in September, they pointed out some things in her contract that she didn’t understand and she simply requested that the label renegotiates her contract. Megan also stated that she wasn’t allowed to drop music because of the label. First, she alleges that she’s only been paid $15,000 from the label after earning more than a billion streams and selling over 300,000 individual track downloads, which equates to an estimated $7 million.

Megan has sine went to court and had a temporary restraining order placed on the label. The judge ordered 1501 Entertainment “to do nothing to prevent the release, distribution, and sale of Pete’s new records,” along with forbidding any interference with her or her career over social media or through her collaborators or associates

The Facts: Both side have said that in Megan’s contract, she is in a 60/40 deal. They’ve both also said that she did receive 15k from the label.

Carl’s Claims: Carl claims that Megan is flat out lying, and he has the receipts to prove it. Carl states that Megan signed with ROC Nation behind his back, and he found out about it in the media like the rest of the world did.

When it comes to Megan’s Contract:

“Let’s talk about your contract. It’s a great contract for a first-timer,” he offers. “What contract gives parts of their masters and 40% royalties and all that kind of stuff? Ask Jay-Z to pull one of his artists’ first contracts, and let’s compare it to what Megan got… I guarantee they won’t ever show you that.” via Billboard

Carl states that he had nothing to do with Megan’s contract. He says Megan’s mother (who passed last year) and T. Farris actually negotiated her contract with his lawyers and they came up with the numbers. Megan is in a 360 deal where there was a 70/30 split, with the label getting the 70%. The only reason that makes sense is because they also gave her a 60/40 split on her masters.

Now to put that in perspective, that is quite a solid deal, being that most artists don’t own any of their masters, especially not on their first album/works. It took Rihanna like 7-8 albums before she owned all of her masters. Chris Brown as well.

Carl also addresses the fact that she states she’s only been paid 15k.

How she been paid $15,000? As soon as we signed to 300, I wrote her a check for $50,000, and it’s signed with her name on the check. We can show you the proof. That’s another thing — I got all my receipts. They know it. I got all the receipts. We gave her a $10,000 advance when we first signed her and gave it to her mother. I don’t know what happened [with that]. 300 gave us a $200,000 check when we first signed. I gave her $50,000 of it. I didn’t have to give her that. That was mine at the time.

Now let’s be honest, when you look at Megan Thee Stallion, in comparison to other female rappers on the come up, she did have some kind of money behind her. Everything from the features with Wale, the EP buzz around Tina Snow, and the “payola” deal that had Hot Girl Summer being played on iHeartRadio every hour on the hour the day of it’s release…. and securing the biggest debut and chart position of her career. Lets just say she didn’t get all that because of her talent. Not saying she isn’t talented, BUT talent only gets you so far.

Lets just sit back and see where this goes…

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