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f'"

JS 44C/SDNY
REV. 4/2014

CIVIL COVER SHEET


The JS-44 civil cover sheet and the information contained herein neither replace nor supplement the filing and service of
pleadings or other papers as required by law, except as provided by local rules of court. This form, approved by the
Judicial Conference of the United States in September 1974, is required for use of the Clerk of Court for the purpose of
initiating the civil docket sheet.
DEFENDANTS
Sugar Hill Music Publishing, Twenty Nine Black Music, and
Joseph Robinson, Jr.
,

PLAINTIFFS
Mark Roberts

cv

ATTORNEYS(t5

ATTORNEYS (FIRM NAME, ADDRESS, AND TELEPHONE NUMBER


Foley & Lardner LLP
90 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10016 (212) 682-7474

267 5

CAUSE OF ACTION (CITE THE U.S. CIVIL STATUTE UNDER WHICH YOU ARE FILING AND WRITE A BRIEF STATEMENT OF CAUSE)
(DO NOT CITE JURISDICTIONAL STATUTES UNLESS DIVERSITY)

28 U.S.C. 1332 Breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty


Has this action, case, or proceeding, or one essentially the same been previously filed in SONY at any time?
If yes, was this case Vol. [RIInvol.

Dismissed. No
No

IS THIS AN INTERNATIONAL ARBITRATION CASE?

Yes

(RI

Yes

If yes, give date _1_1_11_2_1_2_0_0_9_____ & Case No.

TORTS

[ J 110
[ J 120
I J 130
I J 140

I ] 150

I J 151
[ J 152

I J 153

[ J 160
[l(j190

I J 195
[ ] 196

I ] 220
I ] 230
I ] 240
I ] 245
I ] 290

PERSONAL INJURY

PERSONAL INJURY

I ] 440
[ ] 210

ACTIONS UNDER STATUTES

LAND
CONDEMNATION
FORECLOSURE
RENT LEASE &
EJECTMENT
TORTS TO LAND
TORT PRODUCT
LIABILITY
ALL OTHER
REAL PROPERTY

FORFEITURE/PENALTV

I ] 367 HEAL THCAREI

INSURANCE
I ] 310 AIRPLANE
I ] 315 AIRPLANE PRODUCT
MARINE
MILLER ACT
LIABILITY
I ] 320 ASSAULT, LIBEL &
NEGOTIABLE
SLANDER
INSTRUMENT
RECOVERY OF
I ] 330 FEDERAL
'OVERPAYMENT &
EMPLOYERS'
ENFORCEMENT
LIABILITY
OF JUDGMENT
I ] 340 MARINE
MEDICARE ACT
I ] 345 MARINE PRODUCT
RECOVERY OF
LIABILITY
DEFAULTED
I ] 350 MOTOR VEHICLE
STUDENT LOANS I ] 355 MOTOR VEHICLE
PRODUCT LIABILITY
(EXCL VETERANS)
I ] 360 OTHER PERSONAL
RECOVERY OF
INJURY
OVERPAYMENT
I ] 362 PERSONAL INJURY
OF VETERAN'S
MED MALPRACTICE
BENEFITS
STOCKHOLDERS
SUITS
OTHER
CONTRACT
CONTRACT
ACTIONS UNDER STATUTES
PRODUCT
LIABILITY
FRANCHISE
CIVIL RIGHTS

REAL PROPERTY

OTHER CIVIL RIGHTS


(Non-Prisoner)

PHARMACEUTICAL PERSONAL I ] 625 DRUG RELATED


INJURY/PRODUCT LIABILITY
SEIZURE OF PROPERTY

I
I

1365

P~=~~~~~~~~~~~TY

J368 ASBESTOS PERSONAL


INJURY PRODUCT
LIABILITY

usc 881

ACCOMMODATIONS

I ] 445 AMERICANS WITH

DISABILITIES EMPLOYMENT
] 446 AMERICANS WITH
DISABILITIES -OTHER
] 448 EDUCATION

BANKRUPTCY

I ] 422 APPEAL
28

usc 158

I ] 423 WITHDRAWAL
28

I ] 690 OTHER

usc 157

PROPERTY RIGHTS

I ] 820 COPYRIGHTS
I ] 830 PATENT
I ] 840 TRADEMARK

I ] 370 OTHER FRAUD


I ] 371 TRUTH IN LENDING

SOCIAL SECURITY

I
I

J380 OTHER PERSONAL


PROPERTY DAMAGE
] 385 PROPERTY DAMAGE
PRODUCT LIABILITY

LABOR

I ] 710 FAIR LABOR


STANDARDS ACT

I ] 720 LABOR/MGMT
PRISONER PETITIONS
I ] 463 ALIEN DETAINEE
I ] 510 MOTIONS TO
VACATE SENTENCE
28 usc 2255
I ] 530 HABEAS CORPUS
I ] 535 DEATH PENALTY
[ ] 540 MANDAMUS & OTHER

I
I]

751 FAMILY MEDICAL


LEAVE ACT (FMLA)

I ] 790 OTHER LABOR


I

LITIGATION
] 791 EMPL RET INC
SECURITY ACT

PRISONER CIVIL RIGHTS

I ] 550 CIVIL RIGHTS


I I 555 PRISON CONDITION
I ] 560 CIVIL DETAINEE

I
I
I
I
I

] 861 HIA (1395ff)


] 862 BLACK LUNG (923)
] 863 DIWC/DIWW (405(g))
] 864 SSID TITLE XVI
] 865 RSI (405(g))

RELATIONS
] 740 RAILWAY LABOR ACT

IMMIGRATION

I ] 443 HOUSING/

21

PERSONAL PROPERTY

1441 VOTING

[ J 442 EMPLOYMENT

1:04-cv-1 0079

APR 0 720f5

NATURE OF SUIT

(PLACE AN [x] IN ONE BOX ONLY)

CONTRACT

Niles8JJijg~ji?J~gned

I ] 462 NATURALIZATION
APPLICATION

I ] 465 OTHER IMMIGRATION


ACTIONS

OTHER STATUTES
375 FALSE CLAIMS
400 STATE
REAPPORTIONMENT
I ] 410 ANTITRUST
[ ] 430 BANKS & BANKING
I ] 450 COMMERCE
I ] 460 DEPORTATION
I ] 470 RACKETEER INFLUENCED & CORRUPT
ORGANIZATION ACT
(RICO)
I ] 480 CONSUMER CREDIT
I ] 490 CABLE/SATELLITE TV

Ii

I ] 850 SECURITIES/
COMMODITIES/
EXCHANGE

I ] 890 OTHER STATUTORY

I ] 891

ACTIONS
AGRICULTURAL ACTS

FEDERAL TAX SUITS

I
I

1870 TAXES (U.S. Plaintiff or


Defendant)
J871 IRS-THIRD PARTY
26 usc 7609

I ] 893 ENVIRONMENTAL
MATTERS
[ ] 895 FREEDOM OF
INFORMATION ACT
I J 896ARBITRATION

IJ

899ADMINISTRATIVE
PROCEDURE ACT/REVIEW OR
APPEAL OF AGENCY DECISION

[ J 950 CONSTITUTIONALITY OF
STATE STATUTES

CONDITIONS OF CONFINEMENT

Check if demanded in complaint:

CHECK IF THIS IS A CLASS ACTION


UNDER F.R.C.P. 23

DEMAND $>

$75,000

OTHER

-------

~Osb?~T<J..'r'?J:M THIS CASE IS RELATED TO A CIVIL CASE NOW PENDING IN S.D.N.Y.?

JUDGE

--------------------------- DOCKET NUMBER--------

Check YES only if demanded in co!!!Piaint

JURY DEMAND:

liD YES

LNO

NOTE: You must also submit at the time of filing the Statement of Relatedness form (Form IH-32).

(PLACE AN x IN ONE BOX ONLY)

~1

Original
Proceeding

D2

D
D

ORIGIN

D3

Removed from
State Court

a.

.u parties represented

b.

Atleastone

Remanded
from
Appellate
Court

D 4 Reinstated or

Reopened

Transferred from
(Specify District)

Multidistrict
Litigation

0 7 Appeal to District
Judge from
Magistrate Judge
Judgment

party Is pro se.

(PLACE AN x IN ONE BOX ONLY)

U.S. PLAINTIFF

BASIS OF JURISDICTION

U.S. DEFENDANT

FEDERAL QUESTION
(U.S. NOT A PARTY)

IF DIVERSITY, INDICATE
CITIZENSHIP BELOW.

~4 DIVERSITY

CITIZENSHIP OF PRINCIPAL PARTIES (FOR DIVERSITY CASES ONLY)


(Place an [X] in one box for Plaintiff and one box for Defendant)
CITIZEN OF THIS STATE

[lq 1

PTF

DEF
[ ]1

CITIZEN OF ANOTHER STATE

[ ]2

[X] 2

PTF DEF
CITIZEN OR SUBJECT OF A
FOREIGN COUNTRY

[ ]3 [ ]3

INCORPORATED and PRINCIPAL PLACE


OF BUSINESS IN ANOTHER STATE

INCORPORATED or PRINCIPAL PLACE


OF BUSINESS IN THIS STATE

[ ]4 [ ]4

FOREIGN NATION

PTF
[ ]5

DEF
[X] 5

[ ]6

[ ]6

PLAINTIFF(S) ADDRESS(ES) AND COUNTY(IES)

1007 Mcintosh Place


Newburgh, NY 12550
Orange County

'

DEFENDANT(S) ADDRESS(ES) AND COUNTY(IES)

Sugar Hill Music Publishing


443 Liberty Road
Englewood, NJ 07631
Bergen County

Joseph Robinson, Jr.


443 Liberty Road
Englewood, NJ 07631
Bergen County

Twenty Nine Black Music


443 Liberty Road
Englewood, NJ 07631
Bergen County

DEFENDANT(S) ADDRESS UNKNOWN


REPRESENTATION IS HEREBY MADE THAT, AT THIS TIME, I HAVE BEEN UNABLE, WITH REASONABLE DILIGENCE, TO ASCERTAIN
RESII:IENCE ADDRESSES OF THE FOLLOWING DEFENDANTS:

"

...

THIS ACTION SHOULD BE ASSIGNED TO:

Check one:

DATE'{ )/b/IS
RECEIPT#

WHITE PLAINS

[BJ MANHATTAN

(DO NOT check either box if this a PRISONER PETITION/PRISONER CIVIL RIGHTS
COMPLAINT.)

S~TTQRNEY OF RE. CORD

ADMITTED TO PRACTICE IN THIS DISTRICT


[]NO
[XJ YES (DATE ADMITTED Mo. January Yr. 1984
Attorney Bar Code # 0080

~~.~~
fLo uf W ~ t.>!. e ~
1:?

Magistrate Judge. is to be designated by the Clerk of the Court.


Magistrate J u d g e - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - is so Designated.
Ruby J. Krajick, Clerk of Court by _ _ _ _ _ Deputy Clerk, D A T E D - - - - - - - - UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT (NEW YORK SOUTHERN)

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RobertS. Weisbein
Adam G. Pence
FOLEY & LARDNER LLP
90 Park Avenue
New York, New York 10016
Tel: (212) 338-3575
Fax: (212) 687-2329

15 cv 2675

Attorneys for Plaintiff


UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK

MARK ROBERTS,

..,

(_/)

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Plaintiff,

CIVIL ACTION
NO.

v.

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--1

SUGAR HILL MUSIC PUBLISHING,


TWENTY NINE BLACK MUSIC, and
JOSEPH ROBINSON, JR.,

JURY TRIAL DEMANDED

r ,)
_,

Defendants.
COMPLAINT

Plaintiff Mark Roberts ("Roberts"), for his Complaint against Defendants Sugar Hill
Music Publishing ("Sugar Hill Music Publishing"), Twenty Nine Black Music ("TNBM" and,
collectively, the "Sugar Hill Defendants"), and Joseph (Joey) Robinson, Jr. ("Robinson" and,
collectively, with the "Sugar Hill Defendants," the "Defendants"), states as follows:
NATURE OF THE ACTION

1.

This is an action for, inter alia, breach of contract, declaratory judgment, breach

of fiduciary duty, accounting, and unjust enrichment based on the Defendants' refusal to honor
their obligations under a previous settlement agreement with Mr. Roberts and several other
parties, in which the Defendants agreed to provide, Roberts a prorated credit for music and lyrics

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related to a song entitled "Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later."

The Sugar Hill

Defendants, as the music publishers to the song, further agreed to provide an accounting and pay
Mr. Roberts royalties based on this prorated credit.
2.

The Defendants now refuse to acknowledge Mr. Roberts' rightful share, offering

only a portion of the royalties to which Roberts is due and proffering an incomplete, insufficient
accounting that in no way provides the information necessary for Mr. Roberts to determine the
actual amount of money due under the settlement agreement.
3.

Mr. Roberts, therefore, seeks an accounting and an award of his rightful share of

the royalties; the equitable relief of divesting the Defendants of their publishing share derived
from Roberts' writer contribution; an award of costs and attorneys' fees; and such other and
further relief as the Court deems just and proper.
THE PARTIES

4.

Plaintiff is a disabled, retired corrections officer who is, and remains, a resident of

Newburgh, New York.


5.

Upon information and belief, Defendant Sugar Hill Music Publishing is a

company organized and existing under the laws of the state ofNew Jersey, with a principal place
of business at 443 Liberty Road in Englewood, New Jersey, and engages in the business of
administering copyrights, licensing songs to recording companies and others, and collecting
royalties by way of third-party contracts it has with various artists throughout the United States,
including New York.
6.

Upon information and belief, Defendant TNBM is a company organized and

existing under the laws of the state of New Jersey, with a principal place of business at 443
Liberty Road in Englewood, New Jersey, and engages in the business of administering

copyrights, licensing songs to recording companies and others, and collecting royalties by way of
third-party contracts it has with various artists throughout the United States, including New
York.
7.

Upon information and belief, Defendant Robinson is a citizen ofNew Jersey and

is President of Sugar Hill Music Publishing and co-President of TNBM. Mr. Robinson, through
the Sugar Hill Defendants, engages in the business of administering copyrights, licensing songs
to recording companies and others, and collecting royalties by way of third-party contracts it has
with various artists throughout the United States, including New York.

JURISDICTION AND VENUE


8.

This Court has subject matter jurisdiction over this matter pursuant to Title 28 of

the United States Code 1322, as complete diversity exists between the parties and the matter in
controversy exceeds $75,000, exclusive of interest and costs.
9.

This Court has personal jurisdiction over all Defendants because, among other

things, all Defendants purposefully availed themselves of the privilege of conducting activities in
the state of New York by conducting business there generally.

In addition, the Sugar Hill

Defendants consented to personal jurisdiction in the state and federal courts of New York, New
York for any claims arising out of the settlement agreement.
10.

Venue is proper based on 28 U.S.C. 1391 because all Defendants regularly

conduct business in this district and/or a substantial part of the claims arose in this district. In
addition, the Sugar Hill Defendants consented to venue in the state and federal courts of New
York, New York.

STATEMENT OF FACTS
A.
11.

The Previous Dispute with the Defendants.

On December 21, 2004, Mark Roberts filed a complaint for copyright

infringement in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (04-cv10079, the "2004 Action") against several defendants, including Sugar Hill Music Publishing,
TNBM, Sugar Hill Records Ltd., Sylvia Robinson, Joseph Robinson, Jr., Norman Thomas Keith,
and Moe Moore (collectively, the "2004 Action Defendants"). Mr. Roberts alleged in the 2004
Action that Defendants' composition, "Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later" (the "Sugar
Hill Composition"), infringed the copyright in his composition "Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance
Later."

Mr. Roberts owns the copyright to his composition, PAu2-877-776 (the "Roberts

Composition"). The music comprising the Sugar Hill Composition was copyrighted in the name
of Sugar Hill Music Ltd., P A 0000097054. The sound recording was copyright in the name of
Sugar Hill Records, Ltd., SR 0000025003.
12.

Upon information and belief, the copyright in the Sugar Hill Composition was

assigned to Rhino Records, Inc. and Castle Copyright Ltd.


13.

The Sugar Hill Composition was virtually identical to the Roberts Composition.

A copy of the Complaint in the 2004 Action is attached hereto as Exhibit A.


14.

The 2004 Action was settled, and Mr. Roberts entered into several written

settlement agreements with the various defendants including a settlement agreement with Sugar
Hill Music Publishing and TNBM, dated as of September 30, 2008 (the "2008 Settlement
Agreement"), which was signed by Joey Robinson, Jr. on behalf of both Sugar Hill Music
Publishing and TNBM.

Under the 2008 Settlement Agreement, the Sugar Hill Defendants

remained the joint music publishers of the Sugar Hill Composition.

A copy of the 2008

Settlement Agreement is attached hereto as Exhibit B.


15.

Paragraph 1 of the 2008 Settlement Agreement, however, provided that, with

regard to the Sugar Hill Composition, the Sugar Hill Defendants "shall apportion credit for
music and lyrics ... for all purposes to Mark Roberts, Norman Thomas Keith, and Moe Moore."
16.

Pursuant to Paragraph 2, the Sugar Hill Defendants were required to submit a

notification letter regarding the credit apportionment to Broadcast Music, Inc. ("BMI"), an
organization that facilitates the performance of music and subsequent distribution of royalties to
various composers, songwriters, and music publishers.
17.

Most important, in Paragraph 4 of the 2008 Settlement Agreement, the Sugar Hill

Defendants agreed that they would reapportion credit for music and lyrics for the Sugar Hill
Composition in accordance with any judgment or settlement reached between Mr. Roberts and
the other defendants in the 2004 Action. Finally, the Sugar Hill Defendants agreed to render an
accounting and payment of royalties to Mr. Roberts on his writer's share, for any amounts in
excess of $100.00.
18.

The Sugar Hill Defendants, apart from honoring Roberts' potential settlements

with Keith or Moore, agreed not to reapportion credit for music and lyrics for the Sugar Hill
Composition "without the express written permission of Plaintiff [Roberts]." See

3 of 2008

Settlement Agreement.
19.

Mr. Roberts and the Estate ofNorman Thomas Keith (the "Keith Estate"), another

defendant in the 2004 Action, entered into a separate settlement agreement dated November 3,
2009 (the "Keith Settlement Agreement"), whereby the Keith Estate agreed in Paragraph 1 "to

reapportion the credit for the lyrics in the [Sugar Hill Composition] solely to Mark Roberts." A
copy of the Keith Settlement Agreement is attached hereto as Exhibit C.
20.

Accordingly, under Paragraph 4 of the 2008 Settlement Agreement, Defendants

are contractually obligated to abide by the reapportionment set forth in Paragraph 1 of the Keith
Settlement Agreement.
21.

James Cinque, counsel for the Sugar Hill Defendants, sent a letter dated June 10,

2010 to BMI, making BMI aware ofthe reapportionment.

B.
22.

The Current Dispute with the Sugar Hill Defendants

In or about March of2013, Mr. Roberts learned that the song "Spaceship Coupe,"

which was a track on the popular Justin Timberlake album, Twenty/Twenty Experience, sampled
the Sugar Hill Composition. Subsequent to the release of the Twenty/Twenty Experience album,
the Sugar Hill Defendants, as the music publishers for the Sugar Hill Composition, negotiated a
license agreement among the writers of the composition "Spaceship Coupe" (the "Spaceship
Coupe License Agreement").
23.

A dispute has now arisen between the Sugar Hill Defendants and Mr. Roberts

regarding the amount of royalties that he is entitled to pursuant to the terms of the Spaceship
Coupe License Agreement. Notwithstanding repeated requests by Mr. Roberts, the Sugar Hill
Defendants have refused to provide Mr. Roberts with a copy of the Spaceship Coupe License
Agreement.
24.

Furthermore, in response to Mr. Roberts demand for an accounting and payment

of his portion of any royalties that the Sugar Hill Defendants have received from the writers of
"Spaceship Coupe" under the Spaceship Coupe License Agreement, the Sugar Hill Defendants
informed Mr. Roberts that they would not recognize his writer's share as reapportioned pursuant
to the terms of the Keith Settlement Agreement, notwithstanding their obligation to do so under
6

the terms of the 2008 Settlement Agreement, and irrespective of the fact that they acknowledged
the reapportionment in the letter Sugar Hill Music Publishing's counsel wTote to BMI on June
10,2010.
25.

The Sugar Hill Defendants instead offered $8,739.40, which they represented was

Mr. Roberts' share of mechanical royalties under the 2008 Settlement Agreement alone - i.e., the
value of one third of the total writer's share (for both lyrics and music). They also explained that
numerous costs had been deducted from Roberts' share, but provided only a sparse accounting
that in no way documented how much money was received under the Spaceship Coupe License
Agreement or how any deducted costs were actually calculated.
26.

During the course of recent communications between James Cinque, counsel for

the Sugar Hill Defendants, Mr. Roberts' counsel learned that Mr. Cinque, on behalf of Sugar Hill
Music Publishing or an affiliated party, filed six assignments with the United States Copyright
Office, purportedly in connection with the Sugar Hill Composition.

In fact, the sparse

accounting rendered by the Sugar Hill Defendants shows that they deducted $600.00 from the
gross royalties received under the "Spaceship Coupe" License Agreement as a charge back
against Mr. Roberts' share of the royalties. Despite repeated demands to provide Mr. Roberts
with copies of the six assignment documents, the Sugar Hill Defendants and Mr. Cinque
continue to refuse to do so.

A search of the Copyright Office records reveals that these

assignments have not yet been recorded and therefore the information contained therein is not
accessible by the general public.
27.

On January 13, 2015, after the Sugar Hill Defendants still refused to pay Mr.

Roberts' share of the mechanical royalties, or to provide a more detailed accounting, counsel for
Mr. Roberts, pursuant to Paragraph 17 of the 2008 Settlement Agreement, served on James

Cinque and Joseph Robinson, Jr., President of the Sugar Hill Defendants, a letter serving as
official notice of breach of the Agreement and demanding that the breach be cured within 60
days. A copy of that letter is attached hereto as Exhibit D.
28.

On February 20, 2015, James Cinque responded on behalf of the Sugar Hill

Defendants and refused to provide any more accounting information or any more funds beyond
the initial sum of $8,739.40. Finally, Mr. Cinque threatened to deduct his legal expenses from
all future royalties if Mr. Roberts commenced a lawsuit against the Sugar Hill Defendants. A
copy of that e-mail response is attached hereto as Exhibit E.
29.

To date, the Sugar Hill Defendants have still refused to cure the breach or

otherwise honor their obligations under the 2008 Settlement Agreement.


C.

30.

Sugar Hill Music Publishing and TNBM Are Alter Egos of Joey
Robinson, Jr.

Additionally, Roberts seeks to pierce the corporate veil to collect damages against

Joey Robinson, Jr. personally, by virtue of the fact that both the Sugar Hill Defendants are
simply alter egos of Robinson, and that both corporations were created for the purposes of
defrauding and cheating artists like Mark Roberts.
31.

Upon information or belief, Robinson serves as president, or co-president with his

brother Leland, of numerous related music companies, including, inter alia, Sugar Hill Music
Publishing, TNBM, Sugar Hill Records Ltd., and Gambi Music, all of which were defendants in
the original 2004 Action.
32.

Mr. Robinson attempts to hide his illegal and fraudulent activities behind these

various corporate veils and has been sued, repeatedly, for his activities in connection with all
these entities.

AS AND FOR A FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION


(PIERCING THE CORPORATE VEIL)
33.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs in this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.


34.

Robinson is the President of Sugar Hill Music Publishing and co-President of

TNBM.
35.

Upon information and belief, Robinson exercises complete domination over both

the Sugar Hill Defendants with respect to all of their business transactions, and Robinson,
specifically exercised complete domination over these entities with respect to this dispute,
including the decision to steal Mr. Roberts' original song, the Roberts Composition; the decision
to settle the 2004 Action; the decision to enter into the Spaceship Coupe License Agreement; and
the decision to deny Mr. Roberts' his rightful share of the royalties related to the Spaceship
Coupe License Agreement.
36.

Robinson's actions, through these two corporate alter egos, allowed him to cheat

Mr. Roberts, not once, but repeatedly, over the course of the past ten years.
37.

The Sugar Hill Defendants are each the "mere instrumentality" of Joey Robinson,

Jr., who is the real actor and party responsible for all the misconduct outlined herein.
38.

Robinson is, therefore, personally liable for any damages caused by the Sugar Hill

Defendants.

AS AND FOR A SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION


(BREACH OF CONTRACT)
39.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs in this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.


40.

The 2008 Settlement Agreement represents a valid, binding, enforceable contract

between the Sugar Hill Defendants and Mr. Roberts.


9

41.

In Paragraph 1 of the 2008 Settlement Agreement, the Sugar Hill Defendants

agreed to apportion credit for music and lyrics in Sugar Hill's Composition equally to Mark
Roberts, Norman Thomas Keith and Moe Moore.
42.

In Paragraph 4 of the 2008 Settlement Agreement, the Sugar Hill Defendants

agreed that they would reapportion credit for music and lyrics for the Sugar Hill Composition in
accordance with any judgment or settlement reached between Mr. Roberts and the other
defendants in the 2004 Action.
43.

Finally, the Sugar Hill Defendants also agreed in Paragraph 4 of the 2008

Settlement Agreement to render an accounting and payment of royalties to Mr. Roberts on his
writer's share in excess of$100.00.
44.

The Keith Settlement Agreement represents a valid, binding, enforceable contract

between the Keith Estate and Mr. Roberts, whereby the Keith Estate agreed to reapportion the
credit in the lyrics in the Sugar Hill Composition solely to Mr. Roberts.
45.

Mr. Roberts informed the Sugar Hill Defendants of the Keith Settlement

Agreement, and the Sugar Hill Defendants have been provided a copy of the fully executed
agreement.
46.

Mr. Roberts fully performed his obligations under the 2008 Settlement

Agreement.
47.

Mr. Roberts fully performed his obligations under the Keith Settlement

Agreement.
48.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have refused to honor the reapportionment in the Keith

Settlement Agreement and have refused to provide Mr. Roberts a detailed accounting of the
royalties paid in relation to the Spaceship Coupe License Agreement.

10

49.

Both failures constitute material breaches by the Sugar Hill Defendants of the

2008 Settlement Agreement.


50.

Further, the Sugar Hill Defendants actions as a whole constitute a material breach

of the 2008 Settlement Agreement because these actions violate the implied covenant of good
faith and fair dealing that binds all parties to an express contract; specifically, the Sugar Hill
Defendants, by the actions of Joey Robinson, Jr. and counsel James Cinque, have repeatedly
frustrated Mr. Roberts' attempts to enforce his rights under the two settlement agreements.
51.

As a result of these breaches, Mr. Roberts has been, and continues to be, damaged

in an amount to be determined at trial, plus interest accrued and continuing to accrue thereon.
AS AND FOR A THIRD CAUSE OF ACTION
(DECLARATORY RELIEF)

52.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs of this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.


53.

An actual justiciable controversy has arisen and now exists between Mr. Roberts

and the Sugar Hill Defendants regarding Mr. Roberts' rightful credit for music and lyrics in the
Sugar Hill Composition under the 2008 Settlement Agreement.
54.

Accordingly, Mr. Roberts seeks herein a declaratory judgment that the Keith

Settlement Agreement modifies the apportionment originally outlined in the 2008 Settlement
Agreement, and that Mr. Roberts is now entitled to 113 of the music credit and 2/3 of the lyrics
credit for all past, current, and future royalties related to the Sugar Hill Composition.
55.

Such a declaration is necessary and appropriate because a substantial controversy

exists between parties having adverse legal interests as to the 2008 Settlement Agreement, and is
of sufficient immediacy and reality to warrant the issuance of a declaratory judgment.

11

AS AND FOR A FOURTH CAUSE OF ACTION


(INTERFERENCE WITH CONTRACT)
56.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs of this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.


57.

The Keith Settlement Agreement represents a valid, binding, enforceable contract

between the Keith Estate and Mr. Roberts, whereby the Keith Estate agreed to reapportion the
credit in the lyrics in the Sugar Hill Composition solely to Mr. Roberts.
58.

Mr. Roberts informed the Sugar Hill Defendants of the Keith Settlement

Agreement.
59.

Mr. Roberts fully performed his obligations under the Keith Settlement

Agreement.
60.

By failing to award Mr. Roberts his rightful share of the royalties, and honor the

Keith Settlement Agreement, the Sugar Hill Defendants have effectively caused the Keith Estate
to breach that agreement.
61.

As a result of this breach, Mr. Roberts has been, and continues to be, damaged in

an amount to be determined at trial, plus interest accrued and continuing to accrue thereon.

AS AND FOR A FIFTH CAUSE OF ACTION


(SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE)
62.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs of this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.


63.

The 2008 Settlement Agreement represents a valid, binding, enforceable contract

between the Sugar Hill Defendants and Mr. Roberts.


64.

The Sugar Hill Defendants agreed m Paragraph 4 of the 2008 Settlement

Agreement to render an accounting and payment of royalties to Mr. Roberts on his writer's share
in excess of$100.00.
12

65.

Mr. Roberts fully performed his obligations under the 2008 Settlement

Agreement.
66.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have failed to provide a copy of the Spaceship Coupe

License Agreement or a detailed accounting of the total royalties received for the Sugar Hill
Composition, and any deducted costs from these royalties.
67.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have otherwise brazenly refused to provide Mr.

Roberts any useful information regarding the Spaceship Coupe License Agreement.
68.

Without a detailed (and accurate) accounting from the Sugar Hill Defendants,

providing all this information, Mr. Roberts will be unable to protect his rights under the 2008
Settlement Agreement, and, therefore, has no adequate remedy at law.
69.

Further, Mr. Roberts entered into the 2008 Settlement Agreement and gave up

certain rights associated with his original song, the Roberts Composition, with the understanding
that the Sugar Hill Defendants would properly represent his interests in the Sugar Hill
Composition.
70.

The Sugar Hill Defendants, as the music publishers, have failed to protect and

enforce Mr. Roberts' interest in the Sugar Hill Composition, or the rights of the parties to the
2008 Settlement Agreement.

Without such performance, given the nature of the settlement

agreement and the distribution of royalties, Mr. Roberts has no adequate remedy at law.
AS AND FOR A SIXTH CAUSE OF ACTION
(BREACH OF FIDUCIARY DUTY)

71.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs of this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.

13

72.

The Sugar Hill Defendants, by virtue of the 2008 Settlement Agreement, and their

role as music publishers for the Sugar Hill Composition, owe a fiduciary duty to Mr. Roberts and
the other credited writers.
73.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have breached this duty by failing to provide Mr.

Roberts (or any other writer, for that matter) his fair share of the royalties related to the Sugar
Hill Composition and by failing to provide information about the Spaceship Coupe License
Agreement, or a detailed accounting related to these royalties.
74.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have breached their fiduciary duty and wholly failed in

their obligations to Mr. Roberts in order to profit more from the Spaceship Coupe License
Agreement.
75.

As a result of these numerous and continuing breaches, Mr. Roberts has been, and

continues to be, damaged in an amount to be determined at trial, plus interest accrued and
continuing to accrue thereon.
76.

The Sugar Hill Defendants' brazen and repeated breaches of their fiduciary duty,

not to mention the countless other similar lawsuits filed against these same defendants,
demonstrate that they are unwilling to honor their fiduciary duty to Mr. Roberts, now or in the
future.
77.

Accordingly, equitable relief is warranted, specifically a complete divestiture of

the Sugar Hill Defendants' publishing share derived from Mr. Roberts' writers contribution to
the Sugar Hill Composition.
AS AND FOR A SEVENTH CAUSE OF ACTION
(ACCOUNTING)

78.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs of this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.

14

79.

Roberts and the Sugar Hill Defendants, by virtue of the 2008 Settlement

Agreement, and Sugar Hill Music Publishing's role as music publisher for the Sugar Hill
Composition, have a fiduciary relationship, and a mutual and confidential relationship.
80.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have a fiduciary duty to remit to Roberts his fair share

of the royalties in the Sugar Hill Composition, without deducting unnecessary or inequitable
costs associated with asserting any rights associated with the Sugar Hill Composition.
81.

To the extent that the 2008 Settlement Agreement does not provide Roberts the

right to a full, detailed accounting of any royalties from and costs associated with the Sugar Hill
Composition, Roberts is nevertheless entitled to this information based on his relationship with
the Sugar Hill Defendants. Further, he needs this information to determine the amount of money
owed to him by the Sugar Hill Defendants, and, consequently, he has no adequate remedy at law.
82.

Roberts has repeatedly demanded this detailed accounting, but the Sugar Hill

Defendants have refused to provide it.


AS AND FOR AN EIGHTH CAUSE OF ACTION
(UNJUST ENRICHMENT)
83.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs of this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.


84.

Roberts settled the 2004 Action with the Sugar Hill Defendants in exchange for

the promise of his fair share for any royalties related to the Sugar Hill Composition and the
promise that the Sugar Hill Defendants would honor any other related settlements Roberts made
with the other defendants to the 2004 Action.
85.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have failed to honor their commitment and have failed

to provide Mr. Roberts' his rightful share of royalties from the Sugar Hill Composition.

15

86.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have failed to provide a detailed accounting so that

Mr. Roberts can determine what specific amount of money to which he is entitled and have
failed to provide Mr. Roberts a copy of the Spaceship Coupe License Agreement.
87.

If the Sugar Hill Defendants are permitted to withhold this information, which is

necessary for Mr. Roberts to determine what amount of money he is owed, they will be unjustly
enriched, to Roberts' detriment.
88.

If the Sugar Hill Defendants are permitted to retain the amounts they have

wrongfully withheld from Roberts, they will be unjustly enriched, to Roberts' detriment.
89.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have thus been unjustly enriched by obtaining the

benefit of the 2008 Settlement Agreement and the Spaceship Coupe Licensing Agreement
without providing Roberts his share of the associated royalties.
90.

Roberts is entitled to a full, detailed accounting and to collect these wrongfully

withheld royalties.
AS AND FOR AN NINTH CAUSE OF ACTION
(QUANTUM MERUIT)

91.

Roberts repeats and re-alleges each and every allegation contained m the

preceding paragraphs of this Complaint, and incorporates them herein by reference.


92.

Roberts performed his obligations under the 2008 Settlement Agreement in good

faith and entered into the Keith Settlement Agreement with the understanding that the Sugar Hill
Defendants would honor this settlement with the Keith Estate and would provide the information
necessary in the form of an accounting for Mr. Roberts to enforce his rights under 2008
Settlement Agreement.
93.

The Sugar Hill Defendants received the benefit of settling the 2004 Action and

the benefit of the Spaceship Coupe Licensing Agreement.

16

94.

The Sugar Hill Defendants have failed to honor the reapportionment of the

writer's credit in the Keith Settlement Agreement, and have generally failed in their duties as
music publishers of the Sugar Hill Composition.
95.

Roberts is entitled to his fair portion of the writer's credit and a full and detailed

accounting of any royalties from and costs associated with the Sugar Hill Composition.

JURY DEMAND
Plaintiff demands trial by jury on all issues so triable herein.

PRAYER FOR RELIEF


WHEREFORE, Plaintiff respectfully requests judgment against Defendants as
follows:
A.

Enter judgment against Joey Robinson Jr. on the First Count alleged

herein, piercing the corporate veils of the Sugar Hill Defendants and declaring that Robinson is
liable, personally and individually, for any judgments in this action against either of the Sugar
Hill Defendants;

B.

Enter judgment against all Defendants on the Second Count alleged

herein, and order the Defendants to 1) provide a detail accounting of any royalties from and costs
associated with the Sugar Hill Composition; 2) provide a copy of the Spaceship Coupe License
Agreement and other information related to the agreement; and 3) pay Roberts all past, current,
and future royalties related to the composition, an amount to be determined at trial, but believed
to be in excess of $75,000, plus interest accrued and continuing to accrue thereon;
C.

Enter judgment against all Defendants on the Third Count alleged herein,

declaring that Roberts is entitled under the 2008 Settlement Agreement and the Keith Settlement
Agreement to 1) a detailed accounting of any royalties from and costs associated with the Sugar
Hill Composition; 2) a copy of the Spaceship Coupe License Agreement and other information
17

related to the agreement; and 3) a 1/3 music credit and 2/3 lyrics credit for the Sugar Hill
Composition, and all past, current, and future royalties related to the composition;
D.

Enter judgment against all Defendants on the Fourth Count alleged herein,

and order the Defendants to honor the Keith Settlement Agreement and awarding Roberts
damages in an amount to be determined at trial, but believed to be in excess of $75,000, plus
interest accrued and continuing to accrue thereon;
E.

Enter judgment against all Defendants on the Fifth Count alleged herein,

ordering the Defendants to 1) provide a detail accounting of any royalties from and costs
associated with the Sugar Hill Composition; 2) provide a copy of the Spaceship Coupe License
Agreement and other information related to the agreement; 3) perform their fiduciary duty to
Roberts as music publishers of the Sugar Hill Composition; and 4) pay Roberts all past, current,
and future royalties related to the composition, an amount to be determined at trial, but believed
to be in excess of $75,000, plus interest accrued and continuing to accrue thereon;
F.

Enter judgment against all Defendants on the Sixth Count alleged herein,

awarding Roberts the equitable relief of divesting the Sugar Hill Defendants of their publishing
share derived from Roberts' writer contribution;
G.

Enter judgment against all Defendants on the Seventh Count alleged

herein, ordering the Defendants to 1) provide a detail accounting of any royalties from and costs
associated with the Sugar Hill Composition; and 2) provide a copy of the Spaceship Coupe
License Agreement and other information related to the agreement;
H.

Enter judgment against all Defendants on the Eighth Count alleged herein,

ordering the Defendants to 1) provide a detail accounting of any royalties from and costs
associated with the Sugar Hill Composition; 2) provide a copy of the Spaceship Coupe License

18

Agreement and other information related to the agreement; 3) perform their fiduciary duty to
Roberts as music publishers of the Sugar Hill Composition; and 4) pay Roberts all past, current,
and future royalties related to the composition, an amount to be determined at trial, but believed
to be in excess of $75,000, plus interest accrued and continuing to accrue thereon;
I.

Enter judgment against all Defendants on the Ninth Count alleged herein,

ordering the Defendants to 1) provide a detail accounting of any royalties from and costs
associated with the Sugar Hill Composition; 2) provide a copy of the Spaceship Coupe License
Agreement and other information related to the agreement; 3) perform their fiduciary duty to
Roberts as music publishers of the Sugar Hill Composition; and 4) pay Roberts all past, current,
and future royalties related to the composition, an amount to be determined at trial, but believed
to be in excess of $75,000, plus interest accrued and continuing to accrue thereon;
J.

Awarding Roberts such other and further relief as the Court may deem just

and proper.
Dated: April 7, 2015

Respectfully submitted,
FOLEY & LARDNER LLP

o ert . Weisbein, Esq.


Adam Pence, Esq.
FOLEY & LARDNER LLP
90 Park Avenue
New York, New York 10016-1314
Telephone: (212) 682-7474
Facsimile: (212) 682-23299
rweisbein@foley .com
apence@foley .com
Attorneys for Plaintiff
Mark Roberts

19

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 1 of 17

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT


SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK

--------------------------------------------------------------------

)(

MARK ROBERTS,

No.
COMPLAINT

Complaint for
Copyright
Infringement

Plaintiff,

v.
NATHANIEL THOMAS KEITH, ADMINISTRATOR
OF THE EST ATE OF NORMAN THOMAS KEITH,
a.k.a. TOMMY KEITH, MOE MOORE, SUGARHILL
RECORDS LTD., SUGAR HILL MUSIC
PUBLISHING LTD., GAMBI MUSIC INC., TWENTY
NINE BLACK MUSIC, SYLVIA ROBINSON,
JOSEPH ROBINSON JR., RHINO RECORDS,
SANCTUARY RECORDS GROUP LTD., CASTLE
MUSIC UK AND SEQUEL RECORDS,
Defendants.

--------------------------------------------------------------------

)(

Demand for Jury Trial

Plaintiff, Mark Roberts, by his attorneys, Germaine A. Corprew and Tracy


Richelle High, brings this action against defendants Nathaniel Thomas Keith, the
Administrator of the Estate of Norman Thomas Keith and Moe Moore (the "Copying
Defendants"); Sugar Hill Records Ltd., Sugar Hill Publishing Ltd., Gambi Music, Twenty
Black Mu;ic, Sylvia Robinson and Joseph Robinson Jr. (the "Publishing Defendants");
and RHINO RECORDS, SANCTUARY RECORDS GROUP LTD., CASTLE MUSIC UK, and
SEQUEL RECORDS (the "Distributing Defendants"), alleges as follows, on information and
belief, e)Ccept for information based on personal knowledge, which allegations are likely
to have evidentiary support after further investigation and discovery:

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 2 of 17

NATURE OF ACTION
1.

Starting around 1975, Mr. Roberts aspired to be a songwriter, and from

1976 to 1977 wrote lyrics to three original songs (the "Works"): Love Trap, The Woman

That Got Away and Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later. Mr. Roberts sought to copyright
his work using a method employed by many budding lyricists. He mailed each of his
original works to himself in a sealed envelope, so that in the event of a dispute over
ownership of his lyrics, he could show ownership by opening the sealed envelopes and
presenting their contents. On May 31, 1976, he mailed the original lyrics to Love Trap to
himself. On December 11, 1976, he mailed the original lyrics to The Woman That Got

Away to himself. On February 28, 1977, he mailed the original lyrics to Baby Let's Talk
Now, Dance Later to himself.
2.

In January 1978, with the intention of working with an established

producer in the music industry, Mr. Roberts mailed the original lyrics to his three Works
to Norman Thomas Keith, also known as, Tommy Keith. At that time, Mr. Keith was the
producer for the 1970's R&B group the "Moments." The Moments recorded for STANG
RECORDS,

a subsidiary of ALL PLATINUM RECORDS. ALL PLATINUM RECORDS was

established in 1968 in Englewood, New Jersey, by Ms. Sylvia Robinson and her husband
Joseph Robinson Sr.
3.

On or about February 3, 1978, Mr. Keith sent a telegram to Mr. Roberts

requesting that Mr. Roberts contact him to discuss the Works. Later that month, Mr.
Roberts contacted Mr. Keith Mr. Keith told Mr. Roberts that he liked Mr. Roberts'
lyrics; that he wanted Mr. Roberts to send him more lyrics; and that he wanted the
Moments to record tre Works.

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 3 of 17

4.

In March 1978, Mr. Keith called Mr. Roberts regarding Baby Let's Talk

Now, Dance Later, and told Mr. Roberts that he liked that song, and asked if Mr. Roberts
had an idea as to the melody oftmt Work. In response, Mr. Roberts sung Baby Let's

Talk Now, Dance Later for Mr. Keith over the telephone. Later that month, Mr. Keith
played for Mr. Roberts, over the telephone, the three Works Mr. Roberts had forwarded
to Mr. Keith
5.

In the Spring of 1978, Mr. Keith informed Mr. Roberts that the Moments

were leaving ALL PLATINUM RECORDS due to a dispute regarding the promotion of one of
their albums, and that he would be using the three Works with the "Rimshots," another
group he produced.
6.

In the Summer of 1978, Mr. Keith contacted Mr. Roberts once af?ftin, this

time, however, to tell Mr. Roberts that he would be using the three Works on his soloalbum due to be released sometime during 1979.
7.

In early 1979, Mr. Keith contacted Mr. Roberts and informed him that the

record label had m interest in seeing Mr. Keith do a solo album.


8.

Later that same year, Mr. Keith contacted Mr. Roberts and informed him:

that the record labels he worked for, ALL PLATINUM RECORDS, STANG RECORDS and
VIBRATION RECORDS, which were owned and operated by the Defendants Sylvia and
Joseph Robinson, were closing down; that he would not be needing the lyrics to the three
Works; that he would never publish or use Mr. Roberts' three Works; and that Mr.
Roberts could have his original lyrics back.
9.

In the Summer of 1979, Mr. Keith contacted Mr. Roberts to tell him that

ALL PLATINUM RECORDS was now operating as SUGAR HILL RECORDS, and that he was

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 4 of 17

involved in a new kind of music called "Rap." At that time, SUGAR HILL RECORDS was
owned by Ms. Robinson, who had formed the label in 1979 in order to take advantage of
the new "novelty" music called Rap that she had experienced while attending block
parties throughout the New York City area during the late 1970s.
10.

When the Moments left STANG RECORDS in 1978 they were unable to

bring the name with them because it belonged to Ms. Robinson. As a result, the group
formerly known as the Moments went to another record label and recorded under the
moniker "Ray, Goodman and Brown."
11.

Unbeknownst to Mr. Roberts, sometime in 1980 Mr. Keith persuaded

Harry Ray of Ray Goodman and Brown to record and release Mr. Roberts' work Baby

Let's Talk Now, Dance Later for SUGAR HILL RECORDS. Mr. Keith had barely masked the
name of Mr. Roberts' song, when he renamed the Work Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A

Little Later.
12.

After Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later was released in 1980, it

was subsequently compiled into a CD "box set" entitled ''The Sugar Hill Records Story"
and was re-released in the United States by RHINO RECORDS in February 1997 and July
1999. Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later was also compiled into another CD
"box set" entitled ''Sugarhill Street Soul" and was released in the United Kingdom by
CASTLE MUSIC UK in 2000; by Sequel Records in 2000; and by SANCTUARY MUSIC
GROUP LTD. in 2001.
13.

Mr. Roberts never heard from Mr. Keith again after 1979, and recently

discovered that Mr. Keith had passed away.


14.

On or about October 24, 1983, Mr. Roberts became discouraged by the

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 5 of 17

music business and decided to take employment as a New York State Corrections
Officer.
15.

Mr. Roberts copyrighted his original lyrics to Love Trap and The Woman

That Got Away in 1987, and Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later in 1998.
16.

Ms. Robinson claims ownership of the publishing rights to Baby Let's Rap

Now, Dance a Little Later through Gambi Music, Sugar Hill Publishing Ltd. and Twenty
Nine Black Music. By granting the publishing rights of Mr. Roberts' work Baby Let's

Talk Now, Dance Later to RHINO RECORDS, CASTLE MUSIC UK, SEQUEL RECORDS and
the SANCTUARY MUSIC GROUP, Ms. Robinson and Mr. Robinson Jr. reaped a financial
windfall from the proceeds of that song.
17.

Mr. Roberts did not discover that his original work, Baby Let's Talk Now,

Dance Later, had been recorded and released until he visited www.BMI.comon or about
March 8, 2003. BMI.com is a website which provides access to songwriters' catalogues.
Once there, Mr. Roberts discovered that Tommy Keith had listed the three Works: Love

Trap, Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance a Little Later and The Woman that Got Away as his
own original works without crediting Mr. Roberts.
18.

On or about July 23, 2003, Mr. Roberts contacted Defendant Nathaniel

Keith, Tommy Keith's son, by phone, regarding his Works. During the conversation, Mr.
Roberts recited the lyrics to Love Trap and The Woman that Got Away to Nathaniel
Keith Nathaniel Keith was convinced that Mr. Roberts was the author of those Works
based on the fact that those Works had been recorded by Mr. Keith's father- recordings
that Nathaniel Keith has in his possession- but had never been released to the general
public. At the end of the conversation, Nathaniel Keith informed Mr. Roberts that he had

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 6 of 17

no issue with crediting Mr. Roberts as an author on all three Works.


THE PARTIES

19.

Plaintiff Mark Roberts is a disabled, retired corrections officer who is, and

remains, a resident of Newburgh, New York.


20.

Upon information and belief, the Copying Defendants were or are

songwriters under a publishing contract with the Publishing Defendants, who copied Mr.
Roberts' Work, Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later, while employed by Ms. Robinson at
SUGARHILL RECORDS

21.

in Englewood, New Jersey.

Upon information and belief, Norman Thomas Keith passed away

sometime in 1990. His son, Nathania! Thomas Keith, is serving as the Administrator of
his Estate, and is located at 3205 West Clifford Street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
22.

Upon information and belief, defendant Sugar Hill Records Ltd. is an

organization located at 96 West Street in Englewood, New Jersey, and engages in the
business of wholesaling, manufacturing and distributing audio and video products, such
as vinyl records, cassette tapes and compact diskettes.
23.

Upon information and belief, defendant Joseph Robinson Jr., is the

President of Sugar Hill Records Ltd.


24.

Upon information and belief, defendant Sylvia Robinson is the Owner of

Sugar Hill Records Ltd.


25.

Upon information and belief, defendant Gambi Music is an organization

located at 443 Liberty Road in Englewood, New Jersey, and engages in the business of
administering copyrights, licensing songs to record companies and others, and collecting
royalties by way of third-party contracts it has with various artists across the United

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 7 of 17

States, including New York.


26.

Upon information and belief, defendant Joseph Robinson Jr. is the co-

President of Business Affairs for Gambi Music.


27.

Upon information and belief, defendant Sylvia Robinson is co-President of

Business Affairs for Gambi Music.


28.

Upon information and belief, defendant Sugar Hill Publishing Ltd. is an

organization located at 443 Liberty Road in Englewood, New Jersey, and engages in the
business of administering copyrights, licensing songs to record companies and others,
and collecting royalties by way of third-party contracts it has with various artists
throughout the United States, including New York.
29.

Upon information and belief, defendant Joseph Robinson Jr. is the

President of Sugar Hill Publishing Ltd.


30.

Upon information and belief, defendant Sylvia Robinson is the Chief

Executive Officer of Sugar Hill Publishing Ltd.


31.

Upon information and belief, defendant Twenty Nine Black Music is an

organization located at 96 West Street in Englewood, New Jersey, and engages in the
business of administering copyrights, licensing songs to record companies and others,
and collecting royalties by way of third- party contracts it has with various artists
throughout the United States, including New York.
32.

Upon information and belief, defendant Joseph Robinson Jr. is the co-

President of Twenty Nine Black Music.


33.

Upon information and belief, defendant Sylvia Robinson is the co-

President of Twenty Nine Black Music.


7

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 8 of 17

34.

Upon information and belief, RHINO RECORDS is an organization located

at 3400 West Olive Avenue in Burbank, California, and engages in the business of
producing and distributing music COs, reissuing archives, anthologies, and various
artists' musical compilations throughout the United Kingdom and the United States,
including New York.
35.

Upon information and belief, SANC1lJARY RECORDS GROUP LTD., is an

organization located at 45-53 Sinclair Road in London, England and maintains an office
located at 369 Lexington Avenue in New York City, New York under the name
SANCTUARY RECORDS GROUP INC.
36.

Upon information and belief, CASTLE MUSIC UK is a subsidiary of

SANCTUARY RECORDS GROUP LTD., and engages in the business of recompiling and
reissuing catalogue material, released on CD, music-cassettes and records throughout the
United Kingdom.
37.

Upon information and belief, SEQUEL RECORDS is a subsidiary of

SANCTUARY RECORDS GROUP LTD., and engages in the business of recompiling and
reissuing catalogue material, released on CD, music-cassette and record throughout the
United Kingdom and the United States, including New York.

SUBJECT MATTER JURISDICTION


38.

This is an action for copyright infringement arising under the Copyright

Act of 1976, as amended, 17 U .S.C. 101 et

This Court has jurisdiction over this

action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1331 and 1338(a).

PERSONAL JURISDICTION
39.

This Court has jurisdiction over the Copying Defendants pursuant to New

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 9 of 17

York CPLR 302, in that defendants' infringing acts committed in New Jersey caused
injury to Mr. Roberts who resides in New York, and that both defendants intended to
profit from those infringing acts by introducing the copied Works into the stream of
interstate commerce.
40.

This Court has jurisdiction over the Publishing Defendants pursuant to

New York CPLR 302, in that they all transact business in New York by way of
numerous publishing contracts they hold with various musical artists residing within the
State. These artists include, bli: are not limited to: Melvin Glover, also known as, Melle
Mel; Mahandas Dewes, also known as, Kool Moe Dee; and Reginald Payne, also known
as, Reggie Reg Barry Bailey, also known as, Barry B-Stro, George Belton Jr., also
known as, G-Man, Michael Fleming, also known as, E K Mike C, Darryl Calloway, also
known as, DJ Darryl C, and Larry Miller, also known as, Shubee, known collectively as
the "Crash Crew."
41.

This Court has jurisdiction over the Distributing Defendants because they

are subsidiaries of a foreign corporation which has a corporate office located within New
York.
42.

This Court also has jurisdiction over the Distributing Defendants pursuant

to New York CPLR 302, in that they placed the infringing work, Baby Let's Rap Now,
Dance A Little Later, via CD compilations entitled The Sugar Hill Story and Sugarhill
Street Soul, into the stream of interstate commerce, which included New York. The CD
Compilations entitled The Sugar Hill Story and Sugarhill Street Soul may be purchased
at, among other places: HMV, located at 308 West 1251h Street, New York, New York;
Virgin Records, located at 52 East 141h Street, New York, New York; and Tower

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 10 of 17

Records, located at 692 Broadway. The Distributing Defendants have also made the
compilations available via the internet at, among other sites: www. Amazon.com and
http://music.cheaps.us.

VENUE
43.

Venue in this District is proper pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 139I and

I400(a).

AS A FIRST CLAIM FOR RELIEF


(For Copyright Infringement)
44.

Plaintiff realleges each and every allegation set forth above, as if fully set

forth herein:
45.

On or about May 3I, I976, plaintiff, Mark Roberts mailed his original

lyrics to his song Love Trap to himself.


46.

On or about December II, I976, Mr. Roberts mailed his original lyrics to

his song The Woman That Got Away to himself.


47.

On or about February 28, I977, Mr. Roberts mailed his original lyrics to

his song Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later to himself.


48.

In or around January I978 Mr. Roberts mailed his original lyrics to his

songs Love Trap, The Woman That Got Away and Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later to
Norman Thomas Keith, also known as, Tommy Keith.
49.

On or about February 3, I978, Mr. Keith responded to Mr. Roberts

regarding Mr. Roberts' Works with a telegram stating, "Received your material and like
same, please contact me 201-569-5I70."
50.

In or around February I978, Mr. Keith told Mr. Roberts that he wanted to

IO

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 11 of 17

record Mr. Roberts' original Works with the Moments, an R&B Group he was producing.
51.

In or around March 1978, Mr. Keith contacted Mr. Roberts and told him

that he liked the lyrics to Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later, and asked Mr. Roberts if he
had an idea of how the song should be played. As a result, Mr. Roberts sang for Mr.
Keith, over the telephone, Mr. Roberts' expression of how Baby Lets Talk Now, Dance

Later should be performed.


52.

In or around March 1978, Mr. Keith played demos of Mr. Roberts'

original lyrics Love Trap, The Woman That Got Away and Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance

Later to Mr. Roberts over the telephone.


53.

In early 1979, Mr. Keith contacted Mr. Roberts and informed him that the

labels he was working for, ALL PLATINUM, STANG RECORDS and VIBRATION RECORDS,
were going out of business.
54.

In or around the Summer 1979, Mr. Keith contacted Mr. Roberts and

informed him that Ms. Robinson was opening a new record label called SUGAR HILL
RECORDS, and that he would be producing a new kind of music for that record label
called "Rap."
55.

In or around the Summer of 1979, Mr. Keith informed Mr. Roberts that his

three songs Love Trap, The Woman That Got Away and Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance

Later, were Rhythm and Blues (R&B) songs, which he could not use, and that Mr.
Roberts could have the lyrics to his original Works back.
56.

In 1980, Mr. Keith persuaded Harry Ray, formerly of the Moments and

who at that time was performing in the R&B group Ray, Goodman and Brown, to return
to SUGAR HILL RECORDS in order to record and release Baby Lets Rap Now, Dance A

11

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 12 of 17

Little Later, as a Moments song.


57.

The Copying Defendants, Norman Thomas Keith and Moe Moore, are

credited with co-writing Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later.
58.

In or about February 1997, The Sugar Hill Records Story, containing the

Moments' recording of Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later, a version of Mr.
Roberts' original work Baby Let's Dance Now, Talk Later, was re-released in the United
States by RHINO RECORDS.
59.

On or about March 12, 1998, Mr. Roberts obtained copyright No. PAu-2-

266-246 for his work entitled Ready For Betty. Ready For Betty is a collection of Mr.
Roberts' works, including the lyrics to Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later.
60.

On or about July 20, 1999, The Sugar Hill Records Story, containing the

Moments' recording of Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later, was re-released in the
United States by RHINO RECORDS.
61.

On or about April 24, 2000, Sugarhill Street Soul, another compilation of

SUGAR HILL RECORDS songs containing the Moments' recording of Baby Let's Rap Now,

Dance A Little Later, was re-released in the United Kingdom by SEQUEL RECORDS.
62.

On or about May 3, 2000, Sugarhill Street Soul, another compilation of

SUGAR HILL RECORDS works containing the Moments' recording of Baby Let's Rap Now,

Dance A Little Later, was re-released in the United Kingdom by CASTLE MUSIC UK.
63.

On or about January 2, 2001, Sugarhill Street Soul, containing the

Moments' recording of Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later, was re-released in
Europe by SANCTUARY RECORDS GROUP LTD.
64.

During the time of each release of the above-mentioned compilations

12

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 13 of 17

which contained the Moments' recording of Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later,
Sylvia Robinson and Joseph Robinson Jr. claimed ownership of the copyright and the
publishing rights to that work, either individually or through their entities Gambi Music,
Sugar Hill Publishing Ltd. and/or Twenty Nine Black Music
65.

The two CD box-set compilations, The Sugar Hill Records Story and

Sugarhill Street Soul, which contain the Moments' recording of Baby Let's Rap Now,
Dance A Little Later, are still being sold at the time of the filing of this action and
continue to generate monies associated with royalties and publishing rights.
66.

Upon information and belief, on or around March 3, 2003 Mr. Roberts

logged into www .BMI.com, a "professional music website" and did a catalogue search
for Tommy Keith. At that time Mr. Roberts discovered that Mr. Keith had listed in his
catalogue songs titled Love Trap, The Woman That Got Away and Baby Let's Rap Now,
Dance A Little Later. Mr. Roberts also discovered that Mr. Keith had not named him in
connection with any of these works.
67.

Upon information and belief, Mr. Roberts is not credited as an author on

the copies of Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later that were released in 1980, 1997,
1999, 2000 or 2001.
68.

Based on the foregoing, Mr. Roberts was denied the proceeds generated

by Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later through Defendants' infringement of his
copyright in that work.
69.

Each release, in the United States and the United Kingdom, represents a

separate and distinct violation of the Copyright Act 1976, entitling Mr. Roberts to recover
for damages as a result of each infringing act.
13

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 14 of 17

AS A SECOND CLAIM FOR RELIEF


(Vicarious Liability)
70.

Plaintiff repeats and realleges each and every allegation cortained in

paragraphs 1 through 69 of this Complaint as though fully set forth herein.


71.

At the time the Copying Defendants copied Mr. Roberts' original work,

Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later, they were in the employ of Sylvia and Joseph
Robinson at SUGAR HILL RECORDS.
72.

As the employer of the Copying Defendants, the Robinsons had the right

and the ability to supervise the infringing activities of the Copying Defendants.
73.

As their employer, the Robinsons claimed publishing rights in the works

produced by their employees, the Copying Defendants.


74.

As such, the Robinsons stood to enjoy a direct financial gain from all

works produced by their employees, the Copying Defendants.


75.

The Robinsons continue to reap financial gains from Mr. Roberts' original

work Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later, through their publishing companies Sugar Hill
Publishing Ltd., Gambi Music and Twenty Nine Music.
76.

As a result, the Robinsons are vicariously liable for the infringing acts of

her employees, the Copying Defendants.

AS A THIRD CLAIM FOR RELIEF


(Contributory Infringement)
77.

Plaintiff repeats and realleges each and every allegation contained in

paragraphs 1 through 76 of this Complaint as though fully set forth herein.


78.

The Distributing Defendants are in the business of re-compiling and re-

14

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 15 of 17

issuing artist compilations throughout the United States and the United Kingdom.
79.

The Distributing Defendants contributed their services and machinery to

the Copying Defendants and the Publishing Defen:lants so that the Moments' recording
of Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later, a version of Mr. Roberts' original work

Baby Let's Dance Now, Talk Later, could be distributed throughout the United States and
the United Kingdom.
80.

As a result, the Distributing Defendants are liable to Mr. Roberts as

contributory infringers.
AS A FOURTH CLAIM FOR RELIEF
(Joint and Several Liability)
81.

Plaintiff repeats and realleges each and every allegation cortained in

paragraph:; 1 through 80 of this Complaint as though fully set forth herein.


82.

In that the Publishing Defendants are vicariously liable to Mr. Roberts for

the infringing acts of the Copying Defendants and the Distributing Defendants are liable
to Mr. Roberts as contributing infringers, all of the defendants are jointly and severally
liable for all damages suffered by Mr. Roberts as a result ofthe infringement of Mr.
Roberts' copyright in his original work, Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later.

WHEREFORE, Plaintiff demands judgment against Defendants as


follows:
(a)

finding that Defendants have infringed Mr. Roberts'


copyrights in its releasing of Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A
Little Later, into the stream of commerce in 1980, 1997,
1999, 2000, 2001, and listing Love Trap and The Woman
That Got Away in Mr. Keith's catalogue without properly
crediting Mr. Roberts;

15

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 16 of 17

(b)

finding a substantial likelihood that Defendants will


continue to infringe Mr. Roberts' copyrights in Baby Let's
Talk Now, Dance Later, Love Trap and The Woman That
Got Away unless enjoined from doing so;

(c)

preliminarily and permanently enjoining Defendants, their


directors and officers, agents, servants, employees, and all
other persons in active concert or privity or in participation
with them, from directly or indirectly infringing Mr.
Roberts' copyrights in Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later,
Love Trap and The Woman That Got Away or continuing
to market, offer, sell, dispose of, transfer, display,
advertise, reproduce, or develop any works derived or
copied from Mr. Roberts' work or to participate in, assist
in, sponsor or induce such activity;

(d)

enjoining Defendants, their directors and officers, agents,


servants, employees, and all other persons in active concert
or privity or in participation with them, to return to Mr.
Roberts any and all such originals, copies, facsimiles, or
duplicates ofMr. Roberts work, Baby Let's Talk Now,
Dance Later, Love Trap and The Woman That Got Away in
their possession custody or control;

(e)

enjoining Defendants, their directors and officers, agents,


servants, employees, and all other persons in active concert
or privity or in participation with them, to recall all
distributors, wholesalers, jobbers, dealers, retailers, and all
other persons known to Defendants, any originals, copies
facsimiles, or duplicates of any works shown by evidence
to infringe any copyright of Mr. Roberts in the works Baby
Let's Talk Now, Dance Later, Love Trap and The Woman
That Got Away;

(f)

enjoining Defendants to deliver upon oath, to be


impounded and destroyed pursuant to judgment herein, all
originals, copies, facsimiles, or duplicates of any work
shown by evidence to infringe any copyright of Mr.
Roberts in the works Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later,
Love Trap and The Woman That Got Away;

(g)

requiring Defendants to file with the Court and to serve to


Mr. Roberts, within 30 days after service of the Courts
order as herein demanded, a report in writing under oath
setting forth in detail the manner and form in which
Defendants have complied with the Court's order;
16

Case 1:04-cv-10079-LAP Document 1 Filed 12/21/04 Page 17 of 17

(h)

awarding Mr. Roberts and against Defendants the amount


of Mr. Roberts' reasonable royalty according to proof, and
any profits attributable to infringements of Mr. Roberts'
copyrights in accordance with proof;

(i)

awarding Mr. Roberts against Defendants the statutory


damages based upon Defendants' acts of infringement
pursuant to the Copyright Act of 1976, as amended, 17
U.S.C. 101 et~.;

(j)

requiring Defendants to account to Mr. Roberts for all


gains, profits, and advantages derived from Defendants'
acts of copyright infringement and for its other violations
of law;

(k)

finding that any contracts between Defendants, Sugarhill


Records, Gambi Music, Sylvia Robinson, Joseph Robinson
Jr. and Norman Thomas Keith, transferring rights
emanating from the work Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A
Little Later, Love Trap and The Woman That Got Away
including but not limited to, licensing, royalties and
publishing, are null and void because any such contract
resulted in an involuntary transfer of Mr. Roberts'
copyrights in that work;

(l)

Declaratory Judgment finding that Mr. Roberts is the


author of Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later, and
entitled to all rights as owner of a copyright in that work as
guaranteed by the Copyright Act of 1976, as amended, 17
U.S.C. 101 et~.; and

(m)

Granting Mr. Roberts such other and further relief as the


Court may deem just.

Dated: New York, New York


December 21, 2004

Germaine A. Corprew (GC-7518)


Tracy Richelle High
SULLIVAN & CROMWELL LLP
125 Broad Street
New York, New York 10004-2498
Tel.: (212) 558-3985
Fax: (212) 558-3588
Counsel for Plaintiff Mark Roberts
17

"'

...

'

SETTLEMENT AgREEMENT AND RELEASE


This settlement agreement and release ("Agreement"), dated as of
September 30, 2008, by and between Mark Roberts ("Plaintiff'), and Sugar Hill Music
Publishing and Twenty Nine Black Music ("Sugar Hill Defendants'') concerns the
following matters:

WITNESSETH
WHEREAS, Plaintiff is the aJleged sole owner of all right, title and
interest in and to the musical composition entitled ''Baby Let's Talk Now, Dance Later"
("Plaintiff Composition"), registered with the United States Copyright Office pursuant to
registration number PAU 2-877-776;
WHEREAS, the Sugar HilJ Defendants own the publishing rights to a
musical composition entitled "Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later," BMI Number
73211 ("Defendant Composition") and musical compositions entitled "Love Trap," BMI
Number 1878022, and "Girl That Got Away," BMI Number 1878144 ("Joint
Compositions");

WHEREAS, Plaintiff filed a complaint in the United States District Court


for the Southern District of New York ("Court''), under the caption Mark Roberts v.
Thomas Keith, et al., Index No. 04-CV-10079 ("Action"), in which Plaintiff alleges that
the Defendant Composition and the Joint Compositions infringe certain copyrights held
by Plaintiff in the Plaintiff Composition and violated various other common Jaw rights of
Plaintiff;

WHEREAS, without conceding any infringement or other liability with


respect to Plaintiffs claims, the parties have agreed mutually to enter into this Agreement
according to the terms and in consideration of the mutual promises set forth below,
nothing herein being construed as an admission by any party of any kind to the others, all
such liability being expressly denied.
NOW, THEREFORE, in consideration of the promises herein made and
other good and valuable consideration, the receipt and sufficiency of which are hereby
acknowledged, it is hereby agreed as follows:
1.

In consideration of the promises and releases made and granted herein,

Sugar Hill Defendants shall apportion credit for music and lyrics (a) in the Defendant
Composition for all purposes to Mark Roberts, Norman Thomas Keith, and Moe Moore,
in the order stated; (b) in the Joint Compositions to Mark Roberts and Norman Thomas
Keith, in the order stated. Sugar Hill Defendants agree to credit the Defendant
Composition and Joint Compositions as stated in this paragraph to all licensees of those
Compositions.

2.

Sugar Hill Defendants agree to submit a letter to BMI simultaneously with

the execution of this Agreement reapportioning credit as stated in Paragraph 1 and


requesting acknowledgment of that reapportionment, in the form annexed hereto as
Exhibit A. Simultaneously with the execution of this Agreement and the submission of
the letter to BMI referred to in the previous sentence, Plaintiff agrees to file a stipulated
notice of dismissal with prejudice with the Court dismissing the Sugar Hill Defendants
from the Action, in the form annexed hereto as Exhibit B.

3.

Sugar Hi11 Defendants agree not to reapportion credit for music and lyrics

for Defendant Composition and Joint Compositions without the express written
permission of Plaintiff, except as provided in Paragraph 4.
4.

Sugar Hill Defendants agree to reapportion credit for music and lyrics for

Defendant Composition and/or the Joint Composition solely to Mark Roberts if any
settlement agreement with or judgment against the remaining defendants in the Action
apportions credit for Defendant Composition and/or the Joint Composition solely to
Plaintiff. The Sugar Hill Defendants shall remain the sole publishers of the Defendant
Composition and the Joint Compositions and shall not be required to render an
accounting or payment unless an individual writer's share exceeds $100.
5.

Except for claims seeking to enforce the terms of this Agreement,

Plaintiff, on behalf of his past, present or future general partners, limited partners,
principals, predecessors-in-interest, successors-in-interest, administrators, heirs,
executors, representatives, agents, affiliates, licensees, designees, attorneys, transferees,
and all such entities' or individuals' predecessors, successors and assigns ("Plaintiff
Parties") do hereby irrevocably release, acquit and forever discharge the Sugar Hill
Defendants, and each of their past, present or future general partners, limited partners,
principals, predecessors-in-interest, successors-in-interest, administrators, shareholders,
officers, directors, owners, parents, employees, representatives, subsidiaries, agents,
related entities, divisions, affiliates, licensees, designees, attorneys, transferees and all
such entities' or individuals' -predecessors, successors and assigns (..Sugar Hill Parties")
of and from any and all debts, suits, actions, causes of action, controversies, demands,
rights, damages, losses, expenses, costs attorneys' fees, compensation, liabilities,
3

obligations and claims of every kind and nature whatsoever, suspected or unsuspected,
known or unknown, foreseen or unforeseen relating to this action (..Claims"), that the
Plaintiff Parties or any of them may now have, at any time may have had, or may in the
future have, against the Sugar Hill Parties arising out of or concerning any and all claims
asserted in the Action, including any claim that the exploitation by the Sugar Hill Parties
of the Defendant Composition and/or the Joint Compositions infringes Plaintiff's
copyrights or otherwise violates Plaintiff's rights.
6.

Each party hereto warrants, acknowledges and represents that he or it has

all necessary right, title and authority to enter into this Agreement, to grant the rights and
interests herein granted and to perform all of his or its obligations under this Agreement.
Each party hereto further represents and warrants that he or it is not subject to any
statutory or contractual obligation that may make unlawful the execution of this
Agreement.
7.

Plaintiff hereby warrants, represents and acknowledges that he holds all

copyright right, title and interest, and all other right, title or interest, in and to the Plaintiff
Composition and that he is the absolute and unconditional legal owner ofthat work.
Plaintiff further warrants, represents and acknowledges that the consent of no other
person, firm or corporation is required to grant such rights; and that the use by the Sugar
Hill Parties of any portion of the Plaintiff Composition in the Defendant Composition
shall not violate or infringe upon any common law or statutory rights of any person, firm
or corporation.

8.

Plaintiff shall indemnify the Sugar Hill Defendants, in an amount not to

exceed the total sum paid to Plaintiff in royalties by the Sugar Hill Defendants for the
Defendant Composition and the Joint Compositions, from and against claims, in
connection with any proceeding of which Plaintiff has been given reasonable notice,
asserting in whole or in part that the reapportionment of credit for music and lyrics and
accompanying distribution of royalties pursuant to this Agreement violates the rights of a
third party (including but not limited to Moe Moore and the Estate of Norman Thomas
Keith), only if a court of competent jurisdiction determines that Plaintiff improperly was
awarded music and lyrics credit for the Defendant Composition and the Joint
Compositions.
9.

This Agreement is binding upon and shall inure to the benefit of the

licensees, representatives, transferees, affiliates, divisions, entities, related entities,


subsidiaries, parent corporations, successors and/or assigns of the parties hereto.
10.

If any provision of this Agreement is for any reason held to be invalid or

unenforceable, such provision shall not affect any other provision, but this Agreement
shall be construed as if such invalid and/or unenforceable provision had never been
contained in this Agreement.

11.

This Agreement shall be governed by the Jaws of the State ofNew York

applicable to contracts made or to be performed in New York, without regard to the


conflicts of1aw principles thereof. All parties consent to the sole and exclusive personal
jurisdiction and venue in the Federal or State courts in the City ofNew York, New York,
and agree that all disputes or litigation regarding this Agreement shall be submitted to
5

and determined by said courts which have sole and exclusive jurisdiction. All notices
and all applications to any court required by or given under this Agreement shall be given
by, registered mail, return receipt requested, and addressed as follows:

If to Plaintiff:

If to Defendant:

Mark Roberts
1007 Mcintosh Place
Newburgh, New York 12550

Joseph Robinson, Jr.


Gambi Music
443 Liberty Road
Englewood, New Jersey 07631

12.

Any party may subsequently change its address by notice given as

provided in this paragraph.


13.

This Agreement shall be deemed to have been writtenjointly by the

parties. Ambiguities shall not be construed against the interest of any party by reason of
such party having drafted all or any part of this Agreement.

14.

The representations, warranties and covenants contained in this

Agreement or in any other document delivered hereunder shall survive the execution of
this Agreement. This Agreement constitutes the entire understanding between Plaintiff,
on the one hand, and the Sugar Hill Defendants on the other hand, and may not be
modified, amended, tenninated or otherwise altered without an instrument in writing
signed by the parties to be charged.
15.

The parties to this Agreement represent that they have read this

Agreement and know and understand its contents. The parties understand and expressly
agree that this Agreement has been freely and voluntarily entered into and that no oral or
written representations or promises of any kind, unless specifically contained in this
6

Agreement, have been made or relied upon by either party. The parties acknowledge that
they have had the benefit of the advice of legal counsel before executing this Agreement.
16.

The parties may execute this Agreement in separate counterparts, each of

which shall be deemed an original instrument as against the party who has signed it
Each party's signature at the bottom hereof will signify acceptance of, and agreement to,
the terms and provisions contained herein. Facsimile copies of this Agreement shall be
of and have the same legal force and effect as an original.
17.

No failure by any party to perform any of its or his obligations hereunder

shall be deemed a breach of this Agreement unless (i) such party is given written notice
of the failure that is alleged to constitute such breach within sixty (60) days of the alleged
breach, and (ii) the alleged breach is not cured or action to cure such breach is not
commenced within sixty (60) days after receipt of such notice.

ro.c

The parties shall bear then ,,wn CObts an.:t att.Jm::-y.:;'

J S.
in~ un-:!,1

in

~mncl:tmn

f~e~. ~md

with the Action ;md this Agreem<mt

1.!\1 WlTSESS WHEREOF, tho:> p.utit's hereto hav.: .:x.xutul L1is


:hl dar~: tirJ;t l!bove written.
\brk Roberts

uthn Ices

\gr~r:.mt:nt "~ 1JI.

EXHIBIT A

September~ 2008

Luki Henderson, Business &


Legal Affairs Department
BMI
320 West 57th Street
New York, New York 10019
Re: "Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later" (BMI #73211)
"Love Trap" (BMI #1878022)
''The V t That Got Away'' CBM! #1878144)

We are the attorneys for Sugar Hill Music Hill Publishing and Twenty-Nine Black
Music.
This is to advise BMI that our clients entered into a settlement agreement with
Mark. Roberts, 1007 Mcintosh Place, Newburgh, New York 12550, pursuant to which
they agreed to apportion credit for music and lyrics of the compositions identified above
as stated in paragraph 1 of the enclosed settlement agreement Please note that no
changes are to be made in the identity of the publishers.
Please amend your records accordingly. Thank you for your cooperation.
Sincerely,

JPC:kc
cc: Mr. Joey Robinson, Jr.
David Castleman, Esq.

JAMES P. CINQUE

EXHIBITB

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT


SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
-----------------------------------------------------------------------MARK ROBERTS

)(

Plaintiff,
INDEX NO. 04-CV-10079

v.
NATHANIEL THOMAS KEITH, ADMINISTRATOR OF
THE ESTATE OF NORMAN THOMAS KEITH, a.k.a.
TOMMY KEITH, MOE MOORE, SUGAR HILL
RECORDS LTD., SUGAR HILL MUSIC PUBLISHING
LTD., GAMBI MUSIC INC., TWENTY NINE BLACK
MUSIC, SYLVIA ROBINSON, JOSEPH ROBINSON JR.,
RHINO RECORDS, SANCTUARY RECORDS GROUP
LTD., CASTLE MUSIC UK AND SEQUEL RECORDS,

STIPULATION OF
DISMISSAL WITH
PREJUDICE

Defendants,
------------------------------------------------------------------------ ){
Pursuant to the provisions of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4l(a)(l)(ii), Plaintiff Mark
Roberts and Defendants Sugar Hill Records Ltd., Sugar Hill Music Publishing Ltd., Gambi Music Inc.,
Twenty Nine Black Music, Sylvia Robinson, and Joseph Robinson Jr. (the "Sugar Hill Defendants"), by
and through their undersigned counsel of record, now hereby dismiss the Sugar Hill Defendants from this
action, with prejudice, and with all parties to bear their own attorneys fees and costs.

Dated: September 30, 2008


New York, New York
CINQUE & CINQUE
By:

By:

David A. Castleman (DC 0241)


125 Broad Street
New York, NY 10004-2498
Tel: (2 I 2) 558-4000
Fax: (212) 558-3588

James Cinaue (JPC-3763)


845 Third Avenue
New York, NY 10022
Tel: (212) 759-5515
Fax: (212) 759-7737

Attorney for PlaintiffMark Roberts

Attorneys for Defendants Sugar Hill Records


Ltd., Sugar Hill Music Publishing Ltd., Gambi
Music Inc., Twenty Nine Black Music, Sylvia
Robinson, Joseph Robinson Jr.

SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT AND RELEASE


This settlement agreement and release ("Agreement"), dated as of
November 3. 2009, by and between Mark Roberts ("Plaintiff"). and Nathaniel Thomas
Keith in his capacity as administrator of the estate of Norman Thomas Keith ("Keith"),
concerns the following matters:

WITNESSETH
WHEREAS. Plaintiff is the alleged sole owner of all right, title and
interest in and to the musical composition entitled "Baby Let's Talk Now. Dance Later"
("Plaintiff Composition"), registered with the United States Copyright Office pursuant to
registration number PAU 2-'cl77-776;

WHEREAS, Plaintiff filed a complaint in the United States District Court


for the Southern District of New York ("Court"), under the caption Mark Rohert.\ v.

Thomas Keith, eta/., Index No. 04-CY-10079 ("Action"), in which Plaintiff alleges that a
musical composition entitled "Baby Let's Rap Now, Dance A Little Later," BMl Number
73211 ("Defendant Composition") infringes certain copyrights held hy Plaintiff in the
Plaintiff Composition and violated various other common law rights of Plaintiff; and

WHEREAS. the parties have agreed mutually to enter into this Agreement
according to the terms and in consideration of the mutual promises set forth below,
nothing herein being construed as an admission by any party of any kind to the others, all
such liability being expressly denied.

NOW, THEREFORE, in consideration of the promises herein made and


other good and valuable consideration, the receipt and sufficiency of which are hereby
acknowledged, it is hereby agreed as follows:

I.

In consideration of the promises and releases made and granted herein,

Keith agrees to reapportion credit for the lyrics of the Defendant Composition solely to
Mark Roberts. Roberts agrees that in this Agreement, Keith does not reapp011ion any
credit for the music of the Defendant Composition.

2.

Keith agrees not to consent to any reapportionment credit for music and

lyrics for Defendant Composition without the express written permission or Plaintiff.

3.

No payment of a dollar sum is required by Keith as a result of executing

this Agreement provided that he fulfills his obligations under this Agreement.

4.

Plaintiff agrees to dismiss this Action immediately after executing the

Agreement.

5.

Except for claims seeking to enforce the terms or this Agreement.

Plaintiff, on behalf of his past, present or future general partners, limited partners,
principals, predecessors-in-interest, successors-in-interest, administrators, heirs,
exewtors, representatives, agents, affiliates, licensees, designees, atlomcys, transferees,
and all such entities' or individuals' predecessors, successors and assigns ("Plaintiff
Parties") do hereby iiTevocaply release, acquit and forever discharge Keith, and each of
their past, present or future general partners, limited partners, predecessors-in-interest,
successors-in-interest. administrators, representatives, agents, affiliates, licensees,
2

designees, attorneys, transferees and all such entities' or individuals' predecessors.


successors and assigns ("Keith Parties") of and from any and all debts, suits, actions,
causes of action. controversies, demands, rights, damages, losses. expenses, costs
attorneys' fees. compensation, liabilities, obligations and claims of every kind and nature
whatsoever. suspected or unsuspected, known or unknown, foreseen or unforeseen
relating to this action ("Claims"), that the Plaintiff Parties or any of them may now have.
at any time may have had, or may in the future have, against the Keith Parties arising out
of or concerning any and all claims asserted in the Action.

6.

Each party hereto warrants, acknowledges and represents that he or it has

all necessary right, title and authority to enter into this Agreement, to grant the rights and
interests herein granted and to perform all of his or its obligations under this Agreement.
Each party hereto further represents and warrants that he or it is not subject to any
statutory or contractual obligation that may make unlawful the execution of this
Agreement.

7.

This Agreement is binding upon and shall inure to the benefit of the

licensees, representatives, transferees, affiliates, divisions, entities, related entities.


subsidiaries. parent corporations, successors and/or assigns of the parties ht:reto.

8.

If any provision of this Agreement is for any reason held to be invalid or

unenforceable, such provision shall not affect any other provision. but this Agreement
shall be construed as if such invalid and/or unenforceable provision had never been
contained in this Agreemenl.

9.

This Agreement shall be governed by the laws of the State of New York

applicable to contracts made or to be performed in New York. without regard

to

the

connicts of law principles thereof. All parties consent to the sole and exclusive personal
jurisdiction and venue in the Federal or State courts in the City of New York, New York,
and agree that all disputes or litigation regarding this Agreement shall be submitted to
and determined by said courts which have sole and exclusive jurisdiction. All notices
and all applications to any court required by or given under this Agreement shall he given
by, registered mail, return receipt requested, and addressed as follows:

If to Plaintiff:

If to Defendant:

Mark Roherts
I 007 Mcintosh Place
Newburgh, New York 12550

Nathaniel Thomas Keith


3205 Clifford Street.
Philadelphia, PA 19 I 21

lO.

Any patty may suhsequently change its address by notice given as

provided in this paragraph.

II.

This Agreement shall be deemed to have been written jointly by the

parties. Ambiguities shall not be construed against the interest of any party by reason of
such party having drafted all or any part of this Agreement.
12.

The representations, warranties and covenants contained in this

Agreement or in any other document delivered hereunder shall survive the execution of
this Agreement. This Agreement constitutes the entire understanding between Plaintiff,
on the one hand, and the Keith Defendants on the other hand, and may not be modified,

amended. terminated or otherwise altered without an instrument in writing signed by the


parties to be charged.

13.

The pal1ies to this Agreement represent that they have read this

Agreement and know and understand its contents. The parties understand and expressly
agree that this Agreement has been freely and voluntarily entered into, that they have had
an opportunity to consult a lawyer about the terms of this Agreement, and that no oral or
written representations or promises of any kind, unless specifically contained in this
Agreement, have been made or relied upon by either party.

14.

The parties may execute this Agreement in separate counterparts, each of

which shall be deemed an original instrument as against the party who has signed it.
Each party's signature at the bottom hereof will signify acceptance of, and agreement to,
the terms and provisions contained herein. Facsimile copies of this Agreement shall be
of and have rhe same legal force and effect as an original.

15.

No failure by any party to perform any of its or his obligations hereunder

shall be deemed a breach of this Agreement unless (i) such party is given written notice
of the failure that is alleged to constitute such breach within sixty (60) days of the alleged
breach, and (ii) the alleged breach is not cured or action to cure such breach is nol
commenced within sixty (60) days after receipt of such notice.

16.

The parties shall hear their own costs and attorneys' fees, and other fees

incurred in connection with the Action and this Agreement.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties hereto have executed this Agreement as of


the date first above written.

Mark Roberts

Nathaniel Thomas Keith

----------------

FOLEY

ATIORNEYS AT lAW

FOLEY & LARDNER LLP

212.687.2329 FAX

90 PARK AVENUE
NEW YORK, NY 10016-1314
212.682.7474 TEL

foley.com
WRITER'S DIRECT LINE
212.338.3528
rweisbein@foley.com EMAIL

January 13,2015

CLIENT/MATIER NUMBER
999400-5171

VIA E-MAIL [cingue845@aol.com)


AND U.S. MAIL
James P. Cinque, Esq.
CINQUE & CINQUE, P.C.
845 Third Avenue, Suite 1400
New York, New York 10022
Re:

Notice of Breach of Settlement Agreement

Dear Jim:
This letter is in response to your e-mail correspondence of December 30, 2014. Over the
past few months, we have tried to reach an amicable resolution to the current dispute between
our client, Mark Roberts, and your client, Sugar Hill Music Publishing ("Sugar Hill"), regarding
Mr. Roberts' proper share of royalties from Justine Timberlake's use of the song "Baby Let's
Rap Now, Dance a Little Later" (hereinafter, the "Song") on his record 20/20 Experience. In
your most recent e-mail, however, you stated that "I believe that we have exhausted our efforts to
settle the matter," which constitutes an outright refusal by Sugar Hill to fulfill its obligations
under the Settlement Agreement and Release, dated September 30, 2008 (the "Settlement
Agreement") between Mr. Roberts, Sugar Hill, and Twenty Nine Black Music.
Accordingly, pursuant to Paragraph 17 of the Settlement Agreement, this letter serves as
written notice that Sugar Hill has failed to perform, and hence breached, its obligations under the
Agreement. In order to comply strictly with the notice provisions in the Settlement Agreement,
we have sent a copy of this letter to Joseph Robinson, Jr. at the address provided in Paragraph 11
of the Agreement. Having fulfilled the notice requirements, we represent that all further
communications will only be with you, as counsel for Sugar Hill, Twenty Nine Black Music and
Mr. Robinson.
With this notice, Sugar Hill has sixty (60) days after receipt to cure the following
breaches, which are outline below:
I.

BOSTON
BRUSSELS
CHICAGO
DETROIT

Reapportionment: Paragraph 4 specifically requires the Sugar Hill Defendants to


reapportion the credit for the lyrics and/or music of the Song if a settlement with
or judgment against Thomas Keith reapportioned the credit in the Song to Mr.
Roberts. As you are well aware, Messrs. Roberts and Keith reached an agreement
to reapportion Mr. Keith's credit for the lyrics, which was memorialized in a
JACKSONVILLE
LOS ANGELES
MADISON
MIAMI

MILWAUKEE
NEW YORK
ORLANDO
SACRAMENTO

SAN DIEGO
SAN DIEGO/DEL MAR
SAN FRANCISCO
SHANGHAI

SILICON VALLEY
TALLAHASSEE
TAMPA
TOKYO
WASHINGTON, D.C.

:FOLEY
FOLEY & LARDNER LLP

James P. Cinque, Esq.


CINQUE & CINQUE, P.C.
Page 2
separate settlement agreement, dated November 3, 2009, and which
reapportionment you acknowledged in your letter to BMI dated June 10, 20 I 0.
Consequently, Sugar Hill must honor this reapportionment and provide Mr.
Roberts royalties that correspond to his current writer's share.
2.

Full Payment: Mr. Roberts is entitled to his full gross share of all available
royalties, including both performance, mechanical royalties and any other
royalties. While acknowledging that Mr. Roberts is entitled to mechanical
royalties, Sugar Hill has to date only offered to provide Mr. Roberts a third
(33.3%) of the writer's share, for the performance royalties, subject to deductions
for various costs, including but not limited to your firm's legal fees, a musicology
report, and Copyright Office assignment filing fees. However, there is nothing in
the Agreement that allows Sugar Hill to deduct expenses, such as legal fees,
expert fees or filing fees.
In your November 4, 2014 e-mail correspondence, you requested that Mr. Roberts
provide a W-9 tax form. Enclosed with this demand letter is this completed
form. Please remit full gross payment immediately - for all royalties received and confirm that Mr. Roberts will receive his correct share of all future royalties,
including mechanical royalties. 1

3.

Full and Accurate Accounting: Apart from right to full payment, the Settlement
Agreement also requires Sugar Hill to provide a full and accurate accounting to
Mr. Roberts. Sugar Hill's Royalty Accounting Statement, dated October 28, 2014
(the "Accounting Statement") in no way fulfills this contractual obligation. As
explained in our November 17, 2014 letter, the Accounting Statement lacks
sufficient information and documentation for any of the above-referenced
deducted costs. The Accounting Statement also provides no explanation
whatsoever for how Mr. Robert's purported share of $8,739.40 was determined
based on the net royalties of $52,436.43 (or the gross royalties of $63,252.68)
from Timberlake. Finally, Sugar Hill has failed to provide our office with a copy
of the license agreement between Sugar Hill and the Timberlake writers, so that
we may determine what the proper gross royalties should be.

As stated above, Mr. Roberts demands full payment under the Settlement Agreement. Any acceptance of
a lesser amount, such as the sum of$8,739.40, which has been proffered by Sugar Hill, does not waive any rights
Mr. Roberts has under the Settlement Agreement, including the right to additional royalties or a full accounting of
the license proceeds.

:FOLEY
FOLEY & LARDNER LLP

James P. Cinque, Esq.


CINQUE & CINQUE, P.C.
Page 3
Mr. Roberts reserves the right to file suit without further notice to you or your clients.

RSW:agp
cc :

Joseph Robinson, Jr.


Gambi Music
443 Liberty Road
Englewood, New Jersey 07631
(via registered mail, return receipt requested)
Mr. Mark Roberts (via e-mail)

Fo~

W9

Request for Taxpayer


Identification Number and Certification

{Rev. August20la)
Oepatlmanl of the Trtuury
lnltmal Revenue Slll'l'tco
Name {at shown on your Income liM relum)

Give Form to the


requestor. Do not

send to the IRS.

~oBeR"'\~

MARK
Business name/disregarded entity name, II different from above

..

C\i
01

!.

Check appropriate box lor ledereltax c:lanlllcadon:

5 )i!fil'dlvlduaVola proprietor 0 C Corporallon 0 S Corpotatlon 0 Pllltnerahlp 0 TrvsUestala


8.."'
~a
.. iS 0 Umlted liability compa11y. Enter the tax classlffc:allon {CC corporation, SS corporation, Pzpan~arshlp) 11>
0 2
---

~lii

if~ 0

Other (see lnstruc:llont) II>


Addreas {number, ttrael, end apt. or sulto no.)

/OOr

Qj

NfiwR~i_q~
List account numborjs) hera

.:F.r

{opll6na~

---

Exemption from FATCA reponing


coda pranY)

NE'~

"\.AcE'
ioR.~ ''l.SS

Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN)

Enter your TIN In the appropriate box. The TIN provided must match the nama given on the "Name" lin
to avoid backup withholding. For Individuals, this Is your social security number (SSN). However, lor a
resident allen, sole proprietor, or disregarded enllty, eae the Partllnalnuctlons on page 3. For other
anlltles,lt Ia your employer ldentlllcatlon number (EIN). II you do not have a number, see How to get a
TIN on page 3.
Note. lithe account Is In more than one name, see the chart on page 4 for guidelines on whose
number to enter.

l:milll

Exempt peyee code Of II11Y)

Requester's name and address {optlonaq

Me. j;r-J 10 St-\

Chy, stale, and ZIP code

ll

1/)

Exemption {ue Jn11rucUonl):

I Employer ldenllftcallon number

g;J-11111111

Certification

Under penalties of pe~ury, I certify that:


1. The number shown on this form Is my correct taxpayer ldanllllcatlon number (or I am waiting for a number to be Issued to ma), and
2. lam nol subject to backup withholding because: (a) I am exempt from backup withholding, or (b) 1have not been notlfted by the Internal Revenue
Servloe PAS) thai I am subject to backup withholding as a result of a failure to report all Interest or dividends, or (c:) the IRS has nollfled me that I am
no longer subject to backup withholding, and

3. I am e U.S. citizen or other U.S. person [defined below), and


4. The FATCA code(s) entered on this form (II any) Indicating that lam exempt from FATCA reporting Is correct.
Certification lnatructlona. You must cross oulltem 2 above II you have been.notlfled by the IRS that you are currently subject to backup withholding
because you have failed to report ell Interest and dividends on your tax return. For real estate transactions, Item 2 does not apply. For mortgage
lnteresl paid, acquisition or abandonment of secured property, cancellation of debt, contributions to an Individual rellrement arrangement (!RAj, and
generally, payments other than Interest and dividends, you are not required to &lgn the certiHcatlon, but you must provide your correct TIN. See the
Instructions on page._3_._ __

Sign
Here

Slgn;.~-re of

u.s. peraan.,.

Dolo ..

General Instructions
Secllon references are Ia the lntemal Revenue Code unlotaa otherwise noted.
Future developments. The IRS hall created a page en IRS.gov for Information
about Form W9, at www.lt'll.gov/w9. Information about any futvre developments
allecUng Form W9 {such leglllallan enacled after we raleou It) will be pootad
an that page.

Purpose of Form
A perton who Is required to lfte an lnformellon return wllh the IRS must obtain your
cOfTectleKpayer ldantiOcetlon numbar (TIN) to reporl, lor example, Income paid to
you, paymenll mad ate you In setUement of payment c:ard and third pel1y network
transactlona, real estate transactions, monga11a Interest you paid, acqulaltlon or
abandonment ol111curad proparty, cancellollon of debt, or contrlbYtlona you made
to en IRA.
Usa Form W9 only II you are a U.S. paroan {Including a rellidenl allen), to
provide your corruct TIN to the parson requesting It (the requester) and, when
applicable, to:
1. C11111fy that the TIN you are giving Is oorrac::t {or you are welting for a number
to bei..ued),
2. Conlly that you are nol subJect to backup withholding, or
3. Claim exempllon from backllp withholding II you are a U.S. xempt payee, If
applicable, you are alae c:enlfylng thai u a U.S. peraon, your allocable shore of
eny pertnerahlp Income from a U.S. trade or bualneaala not subject to the

,,s-

withholding tax on foralgn panner~' shera of effectively connoc::lad Income, and


4. CariHy that FATCA coda(s)entered an this form {If any) lndlcaUng lhlll you are
exempt from thco FATCA reporting, It correct.
Note. II you are a U.S. peraon and a requester glvn you a form othalthan Fo~
. W9 to raQuar your TIN, you muot use the requester' I form lilt lo subllanllally
slmNar to this Form W-9.
Definition of a U.S. parson. For federal tax purpoaes, you are ccmslderad a U.S.
person II you Bill:
An Individual who Is a U.S. c;ltl;an or U.S. resident allen,
A pannershlp, corporaclan, company, or anoclaUon created or organiZed In the
Unttod Stat or under rha lawa of the United Slat eo,
An estate {other than a toralgn estate), or
A domestic lrust {aa defined In Reguiutlons nc:tlon 301.770t7),
Spec: tal rvlea far partnarahlpe. Pennershipa that condua a trade or bu1lno11 In
tha UniiOd States are generally required to pay a withholding tax under HCtlan
1446 en any foreign partners' ehsro of elleotlvoly conneolad tuablelncome from
such bualness. Further, In certain c:eset where a Form WU hal not been received,
tha rules under section 144!5 require a pllltnershlp to presume lhel a ptU'Iner Ia 1
foreign pmon, end pay the IICIIon t446 withholding lax. Thoroloro, Kyou 1111
U.S. pereon that Is a partner In a pertnershlp conducting a trade or business In ths
Unllad Sratq, provide Form WS to lha pannershlp to 11tabl1h your U.S. allltus
and avoid section t446 withholding on your share of pannerahip Income.

Cat. No. 10231X

Form W-9 (Rov. 82013)

From: cingue845@aol.com [mailto:cingue845@aol.com]

Sent: Friday, February 20, 2015 3:42 PM


To: Weisbein, Robert S.

Subject: "Spaceship Coupe"


Rob:
I am writing in response to your January 13, 2015 letter.
At the outset, I do not understand how you can state that Sugar Hill's conduct "constitutes an outright refusal. .. to fulfill its
obligations." I refer you to the voluminous correspondence you and I have exchanged.
With respect to your specific comments:
1. Reapportionment: I have advised you on numerous occasions that the relevant law is that all joint authors share
equally in the ownership of a joint work even where their respective contributions are not equal, unless there is a written
agreement to the contrary. You have not provided any authority to the contrary. You have not provided me with any
documents specifying each writer's percentage interest. Therefore it is clear that each owns one-third, regardless of
whether the author wrote lyrics, music, or a combination of the two.
2. Payment: Do you seriously contend that Sugar Hill is not entitled to deduct expenses incurred in connection with
establishing and settling the claim of copyright infringement which resulted in the payment your client seeks to share?
As I previously advised you, Sugar Hill is willing to pay a one-third writer's share to your client, provided
that he acknowledges that this is in fact his rightful share. If your client continues to contend that he is entitled to more
than one-third, Sugar Hill shall (as previously advised) interplead the funds at issue and charge your client with all of the
legal fees incurred in connection with such action.
3. Accounting: Sugar Hill provided a detailed accounting statement which I thought I had further explained in my
December 29th e-mail. I am at a loss to understand what other explanation you need. In addition, you have been
provided with the accounting which Sugar Hill received in connection with the settlement.
It is up to your client to determine how to proceed. He can either acknowledge that he is entitled to a one-third writer's
share and receive the proffered payment of $8,739.40, or else the various issues can be presented to a Court for
resolution. If your client chooses the later option, please be advised that all legal fees incurred by Sugar Hill in connection
with any such litigation shall be deducted from your client's share of the royalties.
Very truly yours,
James P. Cinque
CINQUE & CINQUE, P. C.
845 Third Avenue, Suite 1400
New York, New York 10022
Telephone: (212) 759-5515
Telefax: (212) 759-7737
E-mail: CINQUE845@aol.com

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