In a twist that’s got the music world buzzing, Kenyan rap sensation Nyamari ‘Nyashinski’ Ongegu is now facing off against Nigerian music producer Sam Eli in a high-stakes courtroom clash. The issue at hand? A mega-deal with Tecno worth millions of shillings and accusations of copyright infringement that have sent shockwaves through the entertainment industry.The explosive story first hit the streets airwaves courtesy of renowned entertainment journalist Sinda Matiko,on Saturday August 12.
The heated courtroom drama revolves around a jaw-dropping KES 12 million deal that Nyashinski inked with Tecno, making him the face of their cutting-edge smartphone, the Tecno Camon 20. But lurking beneath the glitzy endorsement is a tangled web of musical rights that’s left Nyashinski and Sam Eli squaring off in court.At the heart of the dispute is the mesmerizing beat of Nyashinski’s hit song ‘Wach Wach’. Sam Eli, the musical maestro behind the captivating tune, claims that the beat was unjustly utilized to promote Tecno Mobile’s latest gadget. Sam Eli isn’t just another producer; he’s the mastermind behind the ‘Low_Tint_70’ beat, the very DNA of the hit song ‘Wach Wach’.
In the civil case number E617/2023, Sam Eli, a postgraduate student residing in Kenya, cites music production and composition as his hobby.The case names Nyamari Ongegu as the first defendant ,and Chinese smart phone firm ,Tecno as the second defendants.Sam Eli is the plaintiff.Court documents,verified by multiple media houses, tell a tale of the first meeting between Nyashinski and Sam Eli, where sparks of creative energy ignited. Nyashinski, engrossed in recording his album ‘Lucky You’, stumbled upon Sam Eli in the very studio where musical magic was being woven. Impressed by Sam Eli’s artistry, Nyashinski didn’t hesitate to request a batch of beats from the Nigerian producer.
The story took a twist when the beat from Sam Eli’s studio, originally titled ‘Low_Tint_70’, found its way into the unforgettable ‘Wach Wach’. Sam Eli contends that he’s entitled to a slice of the endorsement deal pie, given his indispensable role in the song’s creation. The legal tussle hinges on the split sheet contract that, in theory, was meant to divvy up the earnings. But here’s where things get more intriguing: Nyashinski’s team avers that they haven’t cashed in on the song’s usage for the Tecno ad campaign. According to them, the big bucks came from Nyashinski’s role as brand ambassador. Sam Eli, on the other hand, argues that he deserves a chunk of that marketing pie due to his rights in the publishing agreement.
A fiery exchange of letters ensued between the two sides. While Nyashinski’s legal eagles took a hardline stance, Sam Eli’s legal team put forth a demand for transparency. The situation escalated as Nyashinski offered a compromise, offering to settle for a not-so-whopping sum of Sh50,000. The gesture, however, was met with icy resistance from Sam Eli, who deemed it an insult in the face of what he believes are millions at stake.
Now, the stage is set for a legal showdown of epic proportions. Sam Eli’s legal eagles are out for blood, adamant that justice be served. Accusations of copyright infringement hang heavy in the air as the Milimani Commercial Court gears up to weigh in on this momentous civil case. Only time will tell as the music world braces for a courtroom crescendo that could forever change the rhythm of the industry.