Though the mixtape era in hip hop has seen beats and samples used liberally, the current climate suggests rappers may be wise to use their best judgment when choosing sampled beats. 50 Cent was sued recently by a Robert Poindexter over a sample in the song "Redrum", which was pulled from the Pretenders song "Love Gonna Pack Up and Walk Out". To 50 Cent's disbelief, it seems that Poindexter doesn't own the rights to the sample either.
In recently filed court docs, 50 explained that the lawsuit is bogus, given that the song was sold to Warner Music Group some time ago. Things are looking good for 50, but the Judge has not yet made a ruling.