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Sugarhill Gang members fight for "Rapper's Delight" royalties, use of band name

 

The Sugarhill Gang are pioneers of hip-hop music. With rap's first No. 1 hit ever, "Rapper’s Delight," the group skyrocketed to fame.

But founding members Wonder Mike and Master Gee have encountered their share of strife as well. For example, due ongoing legal battles, the Sugarhill Gang stars must go by the new band name The Rapper’s Delight Experience.

In their documentary, “I Want My Name Back,” Mike and Gee talk about their struggle to win the right to use their original band name and to get royalties for the songs they  made famous.

“We went into a settlement situation as far as restitution of royalties and whatever licensing agreements.... We also have the trademarks to our stage names Master Gee and Wonder Mike,” Gee told FOX411. “It’s still ongoing because there are other details being worked out, and it’s a constant struggle.”

But life isn't all bad. The legends told us they were happily surprised when A-list actress Sandra Bullock recently rapped their hit song word for word while promoting her new movie 'Gravity.'

“I heard that she had some skills, and when I finally saw it, I went 'Whoa, okay, damn well she does!'" Mike said. "And she knows all of the words."

Master Gee added: “And the reason why she learned it was to impress a guy, so I thought that pretty cool. So when she actually went into the lyrics, she was good. She was hitting it. She was nailing it.”

And while Bullock remembered all the words to their rap epic, Mike said at least once, he did not.

“I was up at Bear Mountain in New York. It wasn’t good. I lost my place and I couldn’t find my way to jump back in so I was kind of freestyling until I passed it to Gee," Mike said. "And then he did 104 bars."

"Rapper's Delight" has opened so many doors for the duo, they can't keep count.

“Once I step out that door into the entertainment arena, we get crazy love everywhere we go,” Mike said. “Like one of the Soul Train Awards years ago, Denzel Washington was in the audience, Danny Glover, Jay Z and Beyonce were doing the lyrics, and all of these people are saying the words right back to me.”

Diana Falzone is a FoxNews.com reporter. You can follow her on Twitter @dianafalzone.
 

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