Kanye West’s legal battle for “freedom” from his music publishing deal just got more complicated. EMI Music Publishing (owned by Sony/ATV) filed a countersuit against West in New York City federal court after he sued them in an attempt to get out of his contract and own his music.
Portions of West’s lawsuit, which was originally filed in January, became public this week. West argues that the legal filing essentially blocks him from retiring, and therefore amounts to “servitude” under California’s seven-year law for entertainers.
According to the contract, West is required to “remain actively involved in writing, recording and producing compositions and major label albums, as [his] principle occupation.” The Chicago native asserts that his deal with EMI ended in 2010.
EMI claims that West signed multiple contract extensions and modifications to his original 2003 contract, the most recent of which was in 2014. The lawsuit notes that West has been handsomely compensated over the years, “including tens of millions of dollars” in advances alone, The Blast reports.
Although West filed in California, EMI is demanding that a judge rule that the contract is a “valid and binding agreement under applicable New York law, and remains in full force and effect.”