Jay-Z is suing a small web-based shop in Sydney, Australia, called The Little Homie, according to the New York Times. The item that sparked the lawsuit is a book called “A B to Jay-Z” which repurposes a line from the rapper’s famous song “99 Problems” as “If you’re having alphabet problems I feel bad for your son, I got 99 problems but my ABCs ain’t one.”
The book features Jay’s likeness, as well as those of other rappers like Biggie Smalls and Eminem. It was released two years ago and Little Homie — which said it was hoping to inspire “the next generation of hood rats” — says it sold out within days, according to the Times. Other titles offered by Little Homie include “First 50 Words With 50 Cent” and “1 2 3 With the Notorious B.I.G.”
Jay’s efforts to combat what his lawyers describe as “a deliberate and knowing attempt to trade off the reputation and goodwill” of his image dates back to 2017, when several cease-and-desist letters were sent. The complaint also alleges that Little Homie had made a “false and misleading representation” that Jay-Z had given his approval to the product and was knowingly affiliating himself with it.
Jessica Chiha, the company’s owner, does not appear to be helping her case with online references to herself as “J-Pain,” her child as a “ghetto little superstar” and her husband as her “baby daddy.” Several photos, allegedly from her husband Danny’s Facebook, seem to show people in blackface at a party.