Post Malone Settles Lawsuit Over ‘Circles’ Hit

Post Malone reportedly settled the “Circles” lawsuit with plaintiff Tyler Armes this week. The Hollywood Reporter. A last-minute deal was reportedly made to settle the trial before jury selection was underway.

THR reports that the trial is slated to include witnesses playing instruments on the stand before it is decided during jury selection. The copyright lawsuit alleges that musician plaintiff Armes co-wrote Malone’s 2019 hit “Circles,” but was denied credit and compensation, according to court documents.

Terms of the settlement were not released, but the court was informed of the settlement during jury selection. THR notes that witnesses at the trial are playing instruments during their testimony.

Post Malone at the 2019 Grammy Awards

According to the lawsuit, Armes, a member of the Canadian rock band Down With Webster, claimed he wrote the keyboard chords and guitar melody and had “significant input” on the bass line. Although the lyrics were incomplete, Armes also claimed that the instrumentation and vocal melodies recorded during the August 2018 recording were said to be the same as the final version of the track.

After Armes tried to reach producer Frank Dukes after the song’s release, Armes was offered a five percent share of the publishing royalties, according to the first legal complaint filed in 2020 in a California federal court. Post Malone’s manager, Dre London, halted negotiations for a greater share of the label’s loyalty and threatened to withdraw the offer if Armes did not accept it.

In his legal complaint, Armes stated that he would be a co-writer and co-producer. If the court ruled in his favor, he would have been entitled to retroactive and future royalties. He also named Duke and Universal Music Group as defendants in his suit, but they were later dismissed from the suit.

Post Malone in Times Square on New Year's Eve

In April 2022, U.S. District Judge Otis Wright allowed the lawsuit to go to trial after Armes “showed genuine disputes as to his authorship of the composition of the session.” Meanwhile, Post Malone, aka Austin Post, has argued that he did not write any music for the final track and was not present for subsequent recordings.

Armes’ lawsuit also stated, “It is an age-old story in the music industry that when a song achieves the runaway success achieved by ‘Circles,’ a person comes out of the woodwork and falsely claims to own the song and demands unreasonable and undeserved unexpected benefit from the song.”

The lawsuit settlement was reportedly reached at the last minute before the lawsuit went to trial. Attorneys for both sides did not respond to requests for comment on the settlement. “Circles” was the number one hit on the US Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks.

Post Malone has been nominated for a Grammy Award four times during his career. Earlier this year, he was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for “I Like You (A Happier Song)” shared with Doja Cat.

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