Copyright Suit Alleges Infringement of “Made For You” Song Arrangement

Singer-songwriters Alexander Cardinale and Morgan Reid sued country musician Jake Owen, as well as the song’s three writers and other relevant parties, in connection with a song they wrote titled “Made for You.” The infringing work, also titled “Made for You,” is said in the complaint to use the original work’s “hook” melody and lyrics nearly exactly.

The complaint was filed in the Middle District of Tennessee. The plaintiffs explained that their composition, which dates back to 2014, was released as an album, played on SiriusXM, and eventually featured heavily in a Coca-Cola advertising campaign. The lyrics to the hook appeared on “two hundred fifty million bottles of Coca-Cola,” the complaint said, and was accompanied by a QR code link to the song.

The allegedly infringing work debuted in 2019, and was performed on an episode of the television program The Bachelorette. According to the plaintiffs, the defendant’s work “makes use of nearly all of the Original Work, including, but not limited to, melodies from the verse and chorus, the ‘hook’ of the Original Work, the lyrics, the theme, the harmony, and the arrangement.” The complaint provided a comparison of the sheet music to further illustrate their argument:

The musical comparison of the two songs at issue, from the complaint.
The musical comparison of the two songs at issue, from the complaint.

The plaintiffs argued that the allegedly infringing work was written at the time of their song’s popularity. They alleged copyright infringement and seek damages and either an injunction or a running royalty in Owen’s version of “Made for You.” The plaintiffs are represented by King & Ballow.