Song Riff Offs: Syl Johnson (1967) and Jay-Z/Kanye West (2011)

With Kanye West being no stranger to controversy in the media, he and his partner in crime, Jay-Z, are being accused of illegally sampling Syl Johnson‘s “The Different Stokes” on their song “Oh Joy”, taken from their new album, Watch The Throne.

As it stands, Syl Johnson didn’t receive any request for permission to sample the song. The soul singer’s label, Numero Group, didn’t recall giving any authority either, although being credited on the album, Watch The Throne.

With the record label publicly and directly tweeting the rappers and insinuating legal action, it should be interesting to see how this whole case turns out.

Listen to both clips below and decide for yourself.

Syl Johnson, “Different Strokes” (1967):

Jay-Z and Kanye West, “The Joy” (2011):