A songwriter is asking Mariah Carey for justice this Christmas.
The “All I Want for Christmas Is You” hitmaker is being sued (again) by songwriter Vince Vance (real name Andy Stone) for copyright infringement, according to a complaint filed in a Los Angeles federal court on Wednesday, per Billboard.
Vance is known for being the frontman of Vince Vance and Valiants and has been working in show business for four decades.
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He previously filed and withdrew a similar complaint last year, claiming Carey ripped off his band’s 1989 song that’s also called, “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”
Vance’s version was recorded in 1989 and garnered “extensive airplay” during the holiday season in 1993, per the lawsuit. Carey’s song was released in 1994, and has hit No. 1 on the Billboard 100 the past four holiday seasons.
The new lawsuit claims Carey lied about writing the hit Christmas song and is asking for at least $20 million in damages.
2019 photo by Terence Patrick/CBS via Getty Images | Mariah Carey performs “Christmas Time is in The Air”
“Carey has without licensing, palmed off these works with her incredulous origin story, as if those works were her own,” the complaint reads. “Her hubris knowing no bounds, even her co-credited songwriter doesn’t believe the story she has spun. This is simply a case of actionable infringement.”
In the new lawsuit, Vance is joined by plaintiff Troy Powers, who claims to have co-written the song with Vance. He is being represented by attorney Gerard P. Fox, who previously represented clients who accused Taylor Swift of stealing lyrics for “Shake It Off.” That lawsuit lasted five years and ended with a confidential settlement in December 2022.
The new lawsuit unpacks the “unique linguistic structure” and similarities of the two songs.
“The phrase ‘all I want for Christmas is you’ may seem like a common parlance today, in 1988 it was, in context, distinctive,” the suit states. “Moreover, the combination of the specific chord progression in the melody paired with the verbatim hook was a greater than 50% clone of Vance’s original work, in both lyric choice and chord expressions.”
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