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1501 submits forthright response to Megan Thee Stallion’s latest lawsuit

By | Published on Monday 5 September 2022

Megan Thee Stallion

Megan Thee Stallion’s label has formally responded to her most recent lawsuit against the company. As expected, 1501 Certified Entertainment reaffirms its position that last year’s compilation ‘Something For Thee Hotties’ does not qualify as one of the albums she is obliged to deliver to the label. It also rejects her claim that she is owed more than a million dollars in unpaid royalties, insisting she actually owes 1501 millions from other elements of its wide-ranging deal with the rapper.

The legal back and forth between 1501 and Megan Thee Stallion, real name Megan Pete, has been rumbling on for some time. She originally claimed that her deal with the label did not follow music industry conventions and was unfairly skewed in 1501’s favour. After she went legal on the matter, 1501 agreed to amend elements of that deal, resulting in Pete’s lawsuit being dismissed.

But then the new dispute began over the three albums Pete is obliged to deliver to 1501 and whether last year’s ‘Something For Thee Hotties’ counts as one of them.

The label insists that it does not, which means – following 2020’s ‘Good News’ and last month’s ‘Traumazine’ – one more record is still owed. Shortly after the release of ‘Traumazine’, Pete filed new legal papers requesting court confirmation that ‘Something For Thee Hotties’ definitely does count towards her album obligations, and therefore she is now free to walk away from the label.

It was that latest legal filing that also demanded more than a million dollars in damages in relation to allegedly unpaid royalties, while also accusing 1501 of being behind a leak of ‘Traumazine’ that resulted in the rapper having to fast track its release.

1501’s formal response is very forthright in its criticism of Pete. “Megan Pete has repeatedly made false and baseless accusations in the press against 1501 and its founder and CEO, Carl Crawford”, it states, before adding that “none of it has been under oath”. Implying, of course, that Pete knows many of her allegations are baseless.

“1501 is the record company that discovered MTS and signed her in 2018, back before she was the success she is now, and when no other record labels were interested in signing her”, it goes on. “1501 made a distribution deal with 300 Entertainment, which helped to make MTS a star. And, as soon as she became a star, MTS decided that she no longer needed 1501 or Carl Crawford, so she has pursued baseless legal actions in an attempt to get out of her valid contractual obligations”.

1501 then runs through the past legal wrangling and the renegotiation of Pete’s deal, and again sets out why it believes ‘Something For Thee Hotties’ does not qualify as an album under that revised contract. And then it moves onto who owes who money.

“Any argument that 1501 has wrongfully withheld money from MTS is baseless because MTS owes 1501 substantially more than her share of any royalty payments”, it insists. That’s because the label is due a cut of many of the rapper’s revenue streams beyond her recordings, what it refers to as ‘entertainment income’.

“MTS has never fully accounted to 1501 for her entertainment income”, it claims. “Nor has she paid 1501 any part whatsoever of its due portion of her entertainment income. Entertainment income includes income from endorsements, sponsorships, special marketing arrangements, strategic partnerships, or other business relationships as well as exploitation of name, image, and likeness, merchandise, live performances, and performances in all media, among other things. 1501 is contractually entitled to a certain percentage of MTS’s entertainment income”.

Returning to its more general beef with Pete, 1501 continues: “Over the course of her two lawsuits, and when she is not under oath, MTS has made false and baseless accusations in the press against 1501 and Carl Crawford. For example, MTS has claimed in the press that she has ‘never been paid from 1501’. But in fact, MTS received an advance from 1501”.

“MTS has refused to meet with 1501 to discuss any of the aforementioned issues”, it goes on. “She has never given 1501 notice of her claims or any opportunity to cure before filing her lawsuits as required by her contracts. When 1501 has provided MTS with notice of 1501’s grievances, she has ignored 1501. When 1501 has requested evidence to support MTS’s claims, she has refused to produce it”.

And as for the recent allegation that 1501 leaked the new album, it notes: “MTS and [her management at] Roc Nation have wrongfully accused 1501 of leaking ‘Traumazine’ before its release date and have claimed to have ‘evidence’ that 1501 did so in the trade press. But, despite demand, MTS has not produced that evidence in this lawsuit”.

With all that in mind, 1501 wants court confirmation that Pete still owes it one album, that the rapper’s allegations against 1501 are without merit, and that it is the label not the rapper that is due damages for unpaid royalties.