U.K. Publisher Sues Dre, Eminem Over Sample

A London music publisher has filed an amended copyright infringement lawsuit seeking a jury trial against Dr. Dre (real name: Andre Young), Eminem (Marshall Mathers), Interscope Records, and Universal

A London music publisher has filed an amended copyright infringement lawsuit seeking a jury trial against Dr. Dre (real name: Andre Young), Eminem (Marshall Mathers), Interscope Records, and Universal Music & Video Distribution (UMVD), among others, Billboard Bulletin reports.

The suit -- filed last week by Minder Music Ltd. in Los Angeles District Court -- replaces a complaint filed July 31, 2000, which alleged that Dr. Dre illegally used segments of the Minder-owned 1980 tune "Backstrokin' " in his song "Let's Get High" (co-written by Eminem and others) from the Aftermath/Interscope album "Dr. Dre 2001." That album has sold 6.6 million units in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan.

The suit seeks at least $3.5 million in damages. Dr. Dre's attorney, Howard King, says the notes in question represent a "very common" bass riff and are not subject to copyright protection. "They're seeking a ridiculous amount of money," says King.

A spokesperson from Interscope was unavailable for comment; a UMVD rep declined comment.