Beyoncè Claps Back After Getting Called Out For Allegedly Misusing A Sample (Again)

Beyonce opens the 2022 Oscars with Be Alive, performance of song from King Richard
(Image credit: ABC)

Beyoncé remains one of the most dominant forces in the music world and, this past summer, her already impressive résumé was recently bolstered by her latest work, Renaissance. The new music has been widely praised by critics and fans alike, though the album’s release has been followed by a couple of issues. Most recently, the entertainer has (once again) been accused of sampling someone’s music without permission. With this, the Grammy winner has now clapped back at the claims. 

Right Said Fred – made up of brothers Fred and Richard Fairbrass – has taken issue with Beyoncé over a song featured on her newest album. The track, “Alien Superstar,” has a sample that mirrors the music from the British pop band’s 1991 hit, “I’m Too Sexy.” This past week, the brothers didn’t mince words when discussing the songstress’ alleged misuse of their work, even going so far as to refer to her as “arrogant.” However, through a statement shared with The Sun and other news outlets, the pop icon’s team asserted that these claims are false:

The comments made by Right Said Fred stating that Beyoncé used ‘I’m Too Sexy’ in ‘Alien Superstar’ without permission are erroneous and incredibly disparaging. Permission was not only granted for its use, but they publicly spoke of their gratitude for being on the album.

And those weren’t the only details that were laid out in the message. The team went on to give an alleged timeline regarding when the megastar asked permission and when the British music artists were apparently paid for the use of the music. The statement specifically reads: 

For their song, there was no sound recording use, only the composition was utilized. Permission was asked of their publisher on May 11, 2022 and the publisher approved the use on June 15, 2022. They were paid for the usage in August, 2022. Furthermore, the copyright percentage of the Right Said Fred writers with respect to the use of ‘I’m Too Sexy’ is a substantial portion of the composition. Collectively the Right Said Fred writers own more than any other singular writer and have co-writer credit. This accusation is false.

These are pretty specific receipts from the Lion King songwriter’s people, and there’s proof to back up at least one point. Back in July, Right Said Fred’s official Twitter account actually gave her a shout-out, thanking her for a credit on the new album. As of this writing, neither Richard nor Fred Fairbrass have responded to this statement. 

As previously alluded to, there have been a number of controversies over Beyoncé’s new album. When it comes to music sampling, Kelis took issue with the Oscar-nominated singer for not notifying her that her song “Milkshake” would be interpolated on one of the tracks. Said interpolation was later removed from the song on streaming services. 

In spite of the controversies, Renaissance has been a hit and serves as another firm notch in Beyoncé’ Knowles-Carter’s belt. It’s had a firm impact on the culture, as even Kevin Bacon is singing the songs to his goats. Though many marvel at Knowles-Carter’s fashion choices and try to emulate her dance moves (like her daughter), it’s clear that it’s her music that remains at the center of her legacy. And while people are still taking in her latest music, many will probably also be interested to see how this matter with Right Said Fred is resolved.

Erik Swann
Senior Content Producer

Erik Swann is a Senior Content Producer at CinemaBlend. He began working with the publication in 2020 when he was hired as Weekend Editor. Today, he continues to write, edit and handle social media responsibilities over the weekend. On weekdays, he also writes TV and movie-related news and helps out with editing and social media as needed. He graduated from the University of Maryland, where he received a degree in Broadcast Journalism. After shifting into multi-platform journalism, he started working as a freelance writer and editor before joining CB. Covers superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. He eats more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.