Mr Vegas (left) and Sean Paul (right)
SEAN Paul and Mr. Vegas are reportedly entangled in a dispute between VP and Greensleeves Records over the remix of the single Hot Gal Today which was released with only Sean's Paul's picture and name on the cover.
Sean Paul is signed to VP and Mr. Vegas is signed to Greensleeves.
The controversy began when Greensleeves was said to have been denied access to the remix version which was financed solely by VP Records.
Murray Elias, director of A&R at VP Records and product manager for Sean Paul's album, told THE WEEKEND STAR that they would not give permission for Greensleeve's to have access to the remix unless they were willing to compensate them for some of the expense incurred in producing the single.
Byron Maury, Mr. Vegas manager, however, told THE WEEKEND STAR that was not what he had a problem with. "I am questioning the reasons why Vegas' name was left off the front of the jacket and was only mentioned 'in the fineprint' at the back and it was both of them who did it," he said.
"Sean Paul and Vegas did that tune so it doesn't matter what sort of remix, you have to give the artiste credit for what is his. They could have put on the jacket Hot Gal Today Sean Paul featuring Vegas," Murray said.
In responding to this question, Elias gave two explanations.
"As it regards not having a picture of him (Vegas) on the jacket, that was because we got a legal notice from Greensleeves restricting us from using any likeness of him on the single and the fact that his name was left off from the front was a big mistake," he explained.
He told THE WEEKEND STAR that he was not present to oversee the single before it went to production and no one had picked up on the error. "I did not even realise what had happened until it was pointed out to us," he said. He said the only solution is to have the problem corrected when they do a second pressing of the records. "That is what we told Vegas' manager, because we are not able to dispose of all that material that we have in the warehouse and so nothing can be done until when we do a second set." He was, however, unable to say how soon, if at all, a second pressing would be done.
Another bone of contention, seems to stem from the belief that Sean Paul's management were the ones responsible for the cover design from which Vegas's name was omitted.
Jeremy Harding, Sean Paul's manager, pointed out that they had nothing to do with the design of the cover or the decision to do a remix of the song, contrary to what is being said.
"There is a misunderstanding that we designed the jacket for the single. We designed all the artwork for the album, but VP did all the designs for the single," he said.
In explaining the root cause of the situation, Harding said it all started when VP decided to do a remix of the song on the punany rhythm to use as the promotional song for Sean's album.
"VP chose to have a remix done on the Punany rhythm instead because the Street Sweeper rhythm was not danceable in the overseas clubs and was not as accepted in the cross over market," he explained.
Harding said VP took the decision to focus the promotion of the single mainly on Sean Paul, because Greensleeves had forbade Vegas from being a part of the music video if they could not have access to the remix for his upcoming album.
Following this, the single was released and the omission of Vegas's name only added more fuel to the fire causing some sort of a personal tension between both artistes.
"I understand why Vegas is upset and I was trying to make a deal where both companies could use the song and Greensleeves defray some of the cost but that didn't work out. Unfortunately, Vegas has focused his disappointment on Sean and Two Hard Records, yet we had no control over what VP choose to do with a song they have secured licensing right to," he said.
Murray, on the other hand, said himself and Vegas did not have anything personal against Sean Paul. "Vegas' career was not built around Hot Gal Today but we just want him to get his credit."
Elias also expressed disappointment that what was a business controversy between two labels had affected the personal relationship between the two artistes. "I am sad to see that this has become a personal thing which has been made even worse by an honest mistake," he said.