Taylor Swift is going to have a lot to shake off on this one. Something as simple as declining a selfie with R&B artist Jesse Graham resulted in a lawsuit for $42 million dollars over song rights. Graham claims that the chorus of her 2014 song, "Shake It Off," from the 1989 album is far too similar to his song, "Haters Gone Hate," which was released in 2013.
He asserts that the chorus of her hit, which goes ("Cause the players gonna play, play, play, play, play / And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate") has disturbing similarities to his song "Haters Gone Hate," simply because it contains the phrase "Haters gonna hate, players gonna play." Graham seems very certain of his case although there don't appear to be very many similarities aside from a few words.
"Her hook is the same hook as mine," Graham told the New York Daily News this past Saturday (Oct. 31), "If I didn't write the song 'Haters Gone Hate,' there wouldn't be a song called 'Shake It Off." "At first I was going to let go," Graham further said, "But this song is my song all the way." Graham additionally heads a religious organization entitled New Day Worldwide and is also suing CNN for using the phrase "New Day" in the title of their morning slot television show.
SPIN additionally reported that he first accused Swift of ripping him off for his 2013 song when he saw her perform "Shake It Off" on the Ellen Degeneres Show. He reportedly contacted her team and wanted to be credited as a writer on the track as well as to have a personal selfie with the singer. Graham apparently contacted her representatives at Sony Music and her personal label Big Machine Records over four times. He decided to sue Swift when his requests were denied and stated that the singer is "definitely trolling him" this week.