Diddy Claims Sting Gets Paid An Absurd Amount Of Money Each Day Over An Iconic Sample

Sting and Diddy at The Grammys

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On March 9, 1997, the hip-hop world was rocked by the death of The Notorious B.I.G., who was killed in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles just six months after Tupac Shakur was murdered in the same manner in Las Vegas.

Those two men were the face of the East Coast and West Coast factions that had spent years engaging in a high-profile beef largely defined by the feud between Suge Knight’s Death Row Records and Bad Boy Records, the New York City-based label that was helmed by the man now known as “Diddy.”

Biggie’s death marked the end of one of rap’s most celebrated (and tragic) eras, as it created a void that would eventually be filled by Jay-Z Eminem, Outkast, 50 Cent, and the other artists who rose to prominence around the turn of the millennium.

Diddy recruited Faith Evans and 112 to create a musical tribute to Big Poppa in the form of “I’ll Be Missing You,” the single that reportedly sold around five million copies, spent eleven weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100, and received an award at the Grammys in 1998.

The beat for “I’ll Be Missing You” was ripped from “Every Breath You Take” by The Police, which created a bit of a legal headache for Diddy and Bad Boy when you consider the producer had declined to clear the sample with the band before releasing the song.

The two sides eventually came to a compromise (if you can even call it that) after Sting filed a lawsuit that resulted in him receiving 100% of the royalties—which has apparently paid off in a very big way over the years.

In 2020, a report surfaced that claimed Sting was raking in $2,000 a day thanks to a deal that supposedly doesn’t expire until 2053.

However, based on what Diddy claimed earlier this week, that number is actually closer to $5,000 (which is kind of a bargain compared to how much money he reportedly pays the mother of one of his children to stay off social media).

If we’re assuming that’s been the case for the past 25 years, that would mean Sting has raked in more than $47 million from a song he had literally no personal involvement in.

It’s very likely the actual number is lower, but I doubt he’s complaining about whatever the real sum is.


On Friday, Diddy clarified he sent the initial tweet in jest.


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Connor Toole is the Deputy Editor at BroBible. He is a New England native who went to Boston College and currently resides in Brooklyn, NY. Frequently described as "freakishly tall," he once used his 6'10" frame to sneak in the NBA Draft and convince people he was a member of the Utah Jazz.