SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — A former girlfriend of Bad Bunny is suing the Puerto Rican superstar for $40 million over a well-known voice recording she provided to the singer before he became famous.
Carliz De La Cruz Hernández, whose sultry recording of “Bad Bunny, baby” was included on two by the artist, claimed in a lawsuit filed this month in Puerto Rico that her voice and the phrase she invented are being used without her permission.
The lawsuit, which was first reported by the Puerto Rican news site Noticel, alleges that the phrase was used in the song “Pa ti,” which has more than 355 million views on YouTube and more than 235 million streams on Spotify. It was also introduced in the song “Dos mil 16”, which has more than 60 million views on YouTube and 280 million plays on Spotify.
The lawsuit states that De La Cruz’s “distinguishing voice” has also been used without her consent for songs, records, promotions, concerts around the world, television, radio, and social and music platforms.
“Since then, thousands of people comment directly on Carliz’s social networks, as well as every time he goes to any public place, about the ‘Bad Bunny Baby’. The foregoing has caused, and currently causes, De La Cruz to feel worried, anguished, intimidated, overwhelmed, and anxious,” the complaint states.
In addition to Bad Bunny, whose real name is Benito Martínez Ocasio, he was sued by Noah Kamil Assad Byrne, his manager.
A message was sent to Assad and representatives of Bad Bunny without obtaining a response at the moment.
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De La Cruz and Martínez became a couple in 2011. A year later they began studying at the University of Puerto Rico in the northern port of Arecibo while working at a nearby grocery store. The lawsuit alleges that, during that time, Martínez constantly created songs and rhythms and consulted De La Cruz for his opinion, who was in charge of scheduling the parties at which she appeared, managing her accounts and contracts.
The origin of the phrase, “Bad Bunny, baby”, came in 2015, when Martínez asked De La Cruz to record himself saying it. She recorded it in a bathroom while she was staying with a friend, because that was the quietest place where she was, and she sent it to Martinez, the lawsuit states.
They offered him $2,000 to buy the recording of his voice. De La Cruz turned it down and talked to someone at Rimas Entertainment who also offered to buy the recording saying it would be used on the forthcoming album “Un verano sin ti,” the lawsuit states.
They never reached an agreement and the song was published without De la Cruz’s consent, according to court documents.