JAY-Z Suing Damon Dash to Stop the NFT Sale of His Debut Album 'Reasonable Doubt'
By Liz Calvario
Damon Dash is being sued by his and JAY-Z's former record label, Roc-A-Fella Records.
According to court documents obtained by ET, the record company is claiming that Dash, one of its co-founders, is attempting to sell the copyright to JAY-Z's debut album Reasonable Doubt. JAY's attorneys allege that Dash is trying to auction off the album as an NFT -- a non-fungible digital token -- without permission. JAY-Z's lawyer had no comment.
In the complaint, it states that Dash "had planned to sell at a SuperFarm Foundation online auction on Jun. 23." While the auction was cancelled, the lawyers claim "Dash is currently frantically scouting for another venue to make the sale."
"Dash does not even own Reasonable Doubt or its copyright and, therefore, has no right to sell the album or any rights to it," the complaint states. "Instead, RAF, Inc. owns all rights to Reasonable Doubt. The sale of this irreplaceable asset must be stopped before it is too late, and Dash must be held accountable for his theft."
The documents state that JAY-Z, Kareem Burke and Dash each own one-third of the shares in Roc-A-Fella. "Dash’s status [as] a minority shareholder in RAF, Inc., gives him no right to sell a company asset," the document states.
JAY-Z's Reasonable Doubt was released in 1996 and launched the rapper's career, selling over a million copies. The lawyers allege that Dash already minted the album as an NFT and is trying to sell it "as soon as possible."
Additionally, the lawsuit also includes an auction announcement from SuperFarm, a platform that allows the sale and auction of NFTs, sharing the news of the album's copyright being auctioned off.
"SuperFarm is proud to announce, in collaboration with Damon Dash, the auction of Damon‘s ownership of the copyright to Jay-2's first album Reasonable Doubt. This marks a new milestone in the history of NFT's, entitling the new owner to future revenue generated by the unique asset," the announcement reads. "The monumental event will last for two days starting on June 23 and concluding on June 25. SuperFarm is excited to host this truly remarkable auction and immortalize one of the world’s greatest artists on the blockchain!"
Per the lawsuit, JAY's lawyers sent a letter to SuperFarm to cancel the auction.
"The bottom line is simple: Dash can’t sell what he doesn’t own. By attempting such a sale, Dash has converted a corporate asset and has breached his fiduciary duties," the lawsuit states.