Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Cheap Trick lawsuit moves forward

A Chicago judge has determined that original Cheap Trick drummer Bun E. Carlos may move forward with a 2013 lawsuit he brought against fellow band members over claims that they have refused to compensate him based on existing agreements amongst the group.

Cook County Record reports US. District Judge Robert M. Dow sided with Brad Carlson (stage name Bun E. Carlos) and rejected two motions from the defendants – the other three members of Cheap Trick (lead vocalist Robin Zander, lead guitarist Rick Nielsen and bassist Tom Petersson) and corporate entities associated with it – to dismiss the suit Carlson brought over allegations of breach of contract and trademark infringement.

Carlson claims in his 11-count complaint, which was first filed in 2013 and amended earlier this spring, that the band has sought to lock him out of business decisions and withhold his share of the revenue despite an agreement he argues stipulates otherwise.

Carlson estimates he is owed sums worth at least $600,000, though likely much more, from revenue the band has earned while touring and selling band-related merchandise since at least 2012.

In 2010, Carlson contends he and his bandmates signed an agreement which noted that while he would step away from performing live, he would remain a fully-vested member of the band, hold equal shares in the band’s fortunes, be an equal partner in the various corporations through which Cheap Trick conducts its business and would maintain the right to essentially nullify any business decision with which he disagreed.

Late last year, the three Cheap Trick members filed a countersuit against Carlson in a Deleware court stating the drummer was ousted from the group when he stopped touring with the band and that left him subject to removal as a corporate director without a unanimous shareholder vote.

“Since March 2010, Carlson has not performed with the band as a touring musician,” the group said in the suit. “The plaintiffs were (and are) free to decide that the defendant is no longer a member of the band.”

Guitarist Rick Neilsen’s son, Daxx, has been handling drum duties for the group since 2010.

See also:

Cheap Trick: At Budokan 35th anniversary featured on In The Studio
VIDEO: Cheap Trick – Guitar Center Sessions preview
Cheap Trick announce 2014 North American tour dates
Cheap Trick to perform on Guitar Center Sessions
Search Cheap Trick at hennemusic