Mariah Carey faces lawsuit for ‘All I want for Christmas is you’

Placeholder while loading article actions

Singer Mariah Carey is being sued over her Christmas earworm, ‘All I Want for Christmas Is You,’ by a songwriter who alleges he infringes the copyright of her song with the same title, which was released five years before his 1994 hit.

Andy Stone, whose stage name is Vince Vance, part of Vince Vance & the Valiants, filed a lawsuit against Carey, 53, in federal court in New Orleans on Friday. He is seeking at least $20 million in damages and alleges copyright infringement and unjust enrichment, among other things.

Carey is named in the suit along with her co-writer Walter Afanasieff and music company Sony.

Court documents describe Vance as an independent artist who, in 1989, co-wrote a song called “All I Want for Christmas is You” and recorded it at a studio in Nashville. It was later released and “received heavy airplay during the 1993 Christmas season…began to make appearances on the Billboard Music Charts”.

Carey’s song with an identical name, but not identical lyrics and music, was released in 1994 on her album “Merry Christmas”. The lawsuit argues that Carey and the other defendants “never sought or obtained permission” from Vance to use, reproduce or distribute the song and accuse them of infringing his copyright.

Here’s a look at one of the most high-profile copyright cases of the past decade — and how experts distinguish between infringement and inspiration. (Video: Daron Taylor, Sarah Hashemi/The Washington Post)

Carey has yet to publicly comment on the lawsuit. Sony Music did not immediately respond to a request for comment early Saturday.

Mariah Carey at the Texas bar that banned ‘All I Want for Christmas’ until December 1: ‘It’s about time’

Carey’s song has become a Christmas classic and a staple on holiday charts every year, which makes it unclear why the lawsuit has only now been filed.

Copyright usually doesn’t extend to song titles alone, with dozens of entries registered for “All I Want For Christmas Is You” at the US Copyright Office on Saturday.

Court documents say Vance’s attorneys initially contacted Carey and others in April 2021 and later sent a letter in December. “Even after communicating the concerns to the defendants, the plaintiff could not come to an agreement on the use of ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You,'” the suit said.

Man breaks into Dallas Museum of Art and damages ancient artifacts, police say

Carey, known for musical hits such as “Fantasy” and “Hero,” was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame this year, which on its website called her “an elite group of songwriters. and said she had “wrote or co-wrote 18 of her 19 number-one songs on the Billboard Hot 100.”

She had her first No. 1 hit in the United States with “Vision of Love” in 1990 and won 5 Grammy Awards, 3 Guinness World Record titles and an Ivor Novello Award with her distinct 5-octave style that won her earned worldwide fame for his musical performances.

Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” remains hugely popular, streaming over a billion times on the Spotify music service and for some it’s an unofficial announcement from the start. of the Christmas season. But others say it’s become overdone and irritating, with a Texas bar last year banning the song from playing until December 1 and then only allowing it to be played once a night. .

Comments are closed.