Famed producer Jermaine Dupri is known for being at the helm of some of R&B's biggest hits, including Mariah Carey's "We Belong Together" and Monica's "The First Night." Now, JD is defending the honor of another of his masterpieces, Usher's "U Got It Bad," saying that Ciara's new post-breakup anthem "I Bet" sounds jarringly similar to the 2001 smash.
According to Billboard, Dupri, 42, said in an interview that CiCi completely jacked Usher's sound, comparing the situation to that of Pharrell and Robin Thicke's legal battle with Marvin Gaye's estate.
"Ciara's new single is a complete rip-off of Usher's 'U Got It Bad,'" he said. "I'm clear on what I made and I'm clear on how music influences people and I'm clear on chord changes and how people move things... It might not be as evident as the 'Blurred Lines' situation, but I believe the same thing happened to me."
Expounding on the alleged plagiarism claims, JD said that he even spoke with Usher and the song's co-producer Bryan-Michael Cox, who both spotted the similarities as well.
Dupri says that he plans on reaching out to both Ciara and the producers of "I Bet" to get to the bottom of this discrepancy, with the ultimate hope of Cox and Usher being properly credited. The Georgia-raised singer's reps have not yet shared their thoughts on Dupri's comments.
"I Bet" has peaked at No. 27 on Billboard's R&B/Hip-Hop songs chart since its January debut.
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(Photos from left: Prince Williams/FilmMagic, Noam Galai/Getty Images)