Jay Z hasn’t taken too kindly to Rita Ora’s lawsuit against Roc Nation, filing a countersuit against the British singer for £1.6 million.
Roc Nation is now set to release Ora from her contract, having signed her to the label back in 2008.
In December of last year, Ora filed a lawsuit against Roc Nation, claiming that the label was stalling on releasing material from her second album.
On the other side, Roc Nation claims it signed Rita when she was unknown, invested millions in her career, and that Ora was contractually obligated to produce five albums. She has only released one.
Roc Nation says it spent £1.6 million marketing her second album and that the object of their countersuit is to get that money back, stating it signed Ora when she was an “unknown singer” and “has tirelessly promoted [her] career, investing millions of dollars in marketing, recording and other costs, which was instrumental in guiding Ms Ora to her current level of success and fame.”
Ora’s attorney Howard King has told the New York Post’s Page Six that Jay Z has already pretty much released Ora from the label, saying: “Jay Z has personally and graciously promised Rita complete freedom from Roc Nation, the details of which are now being finalised.
“We believe that Roc Nation’s distributor, Sony Music, has required Roc Nation to file this action to preserve whatever rights Sony might have pending resolution.”
X-Factor judge Ora’s music is still distributed by Sony, despite the label switching distribution partners to Universal in 2013.
Her court case says: “Between Sony’s limited economic return from its orphaned relationship with Roc Nation and Sony’s indirect relationship with Rita, Rita is caught in a political quagmire of dysfunction.”
Her court action is still ongoing. Ora’s debut album, Ora, reached No 1 in 2012. Since then, she has been a judge on The Voice and The X Factor without releasing a new album.
Loaded’s entertainment editor Jennifer O’Brien is an award-winning journalist who has written extensively about popular culture as a national newspaper columnist and author. Follow her on Twitter at @Jen_OBrien1