“Never Gonna Give You Up” singer Rick Astley sued rapper and songwriter Yung Gravy over Gravy’s 2022 song “Becky (Get Money).”

He claims that the song violates Astley’s right to publicity by using mimicry of his voice without his consent.

Lawyers allege that Matthew Hauri (stage name Yung Gravy) “flagrantly impersonated” Astley’s voice and “falsely stated he endorsed them with no request, forewarning, or remorse.”

Lawyers allege that this has caused Astley “immense damage.”

The lawsuit reads as follows: “In an effort to capitalize off of the immense popularity and goodwill of Mr. Astley, Defendants recorded and released the song ‘Betty (Get Money)’ which interpolates ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ and conspired to include a deliberate and nearly indistinguishable imitation of Mr. Astley’s voice throughout the song. The imitation of Mr. Astley’s voice was so successful the public believed it was actually Mr. Astley singing and/or a direct sample (digital lifting of the actual sounds of Mr. Astley’s voice from the sound recording) of ‘Never Gonna Give You Up.'”

Gravy’s team alleges that they were cleared by Astley to use Astley’s music and lyrics from the song “Never Gonna Give You Up” but were “unable to obtain a license for a sample,” meaning that they were unable to use Astley’s actual voice.

To adhere to this, Gravy’s team allegedly hired  Nick “Popnick” Seeley to recreate Astley’s voice on the track. Astley’s lawyers argue that because Astley’s voice is so distinct and Gravy mimicked it almost exactly that it violates Astley’s federal right to publicity.

“A license to use the original underlying musical composition does not authorize the stealing of the artist’s voice in the original recording,” Astley’s lawyers allege. “So, instead, they resorted to theft of Mr. Astley’s voice without a license and without agreement.”

The filing cited a Billboard interview which documents Gravy saying that he “basically remade” Astley’s hit song “because it makes it easier legally.” The filing also cites one of Seeley’s Instagram videos in which he states that he wants his voice to sound “identical to the original recording.”

Astley’s lawyers further allege that Gravy broke trademark law by creating “further consumer confusion” because he had falsely stated that Astley was a fan and supporter of the song.