The Lawsuit Against Uncle Louie
A full timeline of events (with quotes, but no screenshots) can be found here.
Uncle Louie posts an ad on Twitter asking if anyone wants to get Kool Rock Ski on a song to contact him. I contact him figuring I could never afford it. It turns out I could.
But I didn't have any ideas for a song until much later.
I send Uncle Louie a Direct Message on Twitter saying I was interested and asked what I got for my money. He replied saying I would get 16 lines from Prince Markie Dee. (Note: He initially asked me to keep the amount private, but he has since divulged it in a public tweet, so I can talk about it.)
The song wasn't ready, so I asked him if I could pay him at that time to lock in the rate and then have Mark record his verse when the song is ready. He replied:
That was our agreement. That is a written (if informal) agreement between me and the Uncle Louie Music Group. That is a legal contract. I pay Uncle Louie. Mark records the verse. End of agreement. And here is my PayPal receipt.
Note to whom the payment was sent. Uncle Louie LLC d/b/a Uncle Louie Music Group. I did not pay Prince Markie Dee. In fact up to this point I had had no interactions with Mark about this at all.
Getting It Done For My Album
I had plans to release my album on April 1, 2011 (which I did, and it went to #28 on the Hip Hop charts on iTunes that day). In order to get this song on the album I needed Mark's verse by March 18th. I sent him all the material for the song on February 24th, so he had about a month to do it.
On March 20th I received this email from Prince Markie Dee.
I told him to call a studio and get it done. I still wanted it to happen. He replied the next day saying he was calling a studio but I never heard from him after that. I released my album without the song on it. You can hear some samples and order a copy of my album here.
After that I sent Mark polite reminder emails every few weeks. Finally in August of 2011 I got a reply from Mark that he was scheduling studio time and promised me the verse by the end of the week. That didn't happen. I followed up with an email and got this reply:
The verse never arrived. Again I sent Mark polite reminder emails every few weeks but I never got another reply from him.
Finally for the sake of my sanity I had to impose a deadline. I emailed both Prince Markie Dee and Uncle Louie on March 19, 2012 saying I wanted the verse by the end of April or I would then ask for my money back. I got no reply from either party.
On April 30th, the due date, I emailed all of them saying that time was up and I wanted the file by the end of the day or I wanted my money back. Uncle Louie replied:
This reply really made me angry, but before I could reply to him I got this reply from Mark:
He never did. A week later I emailed both of them asking for my money back and got no reply. On May 16th, 2012 I emailed Uncle Louie politely asking for my money back and he deflected the request, saying my agreement was between me and Mark. This isn't true. See above. I told him my agreement was with him, not Mark, and got this reply:
Finally I emailed both Mark and Louie on June 1st politely asking for my money back one last time and got no reply.
I realized I was going to have to sue to get my money back. After confirming with a lawyer that I should sue the company with which I made the agreement I filed a claim in New Jersey's Small Claims Court for $500 against the Uncle Louie Music Group.
The day of the trial nobody from Uncle Louie showed up, but because the company is not based in New Jersey the judge wanted to hear my testimony about the case. I told him basically everything I just outlined above, showing him all the same documents I have here. He found this in his ruling:
1. I answered a national public advertisement for business from the Uncle Louie Music Group.
2. I had an agreement with Uncle Louie Music Group to pay for a verse from Prince Markie Dee.
3. I paid Uncle Louie Music Group $500 for the verse which was never delivered.
4. Uncle Louie Music Group is liable for the $500.
He ruled in my favor for $500, plus $22 in court filing fees.
To date Louie has not paid me for the judgement against him. On July 29th I outlined what happened on my monthly podcast The Insider just so my fans could hear the whole story. I tweeted about the episode and mentioned @PrinceMarkieDee and @UncleLouie so my fans would know who I was talking about and maybe one of them would step up and either give me the money or send me the verse. Even after all I've been through I'll still take the verse.
Instead, Louie tweeted these two replies, which I took as a threat:
He never finished that sentence, but he did go on to call me a racist. Under the Twitter profile of @theFatBoys, which he runs, he simply posted the word "Racist" with my Twitter handle. Many of his other accounts then retweeted this:
All of those tweets have since been taken down, but I have a record of them.
Since this happened, several of my friends and fans have come rallying to my aid, which I really appreciate. However, for the record, I did not start that and I am not encouraging it. I am posting this entry because I want to get the facts out there about what happened.
This has gone on far too long and I just want it to end. But it's not going to end until I either get the verse or I get my money back.