Vicky Cornell, widow of singer Chris Cornell, who died in 2017, has started a lawsuit against members of the band Soundgarden and their business manager , TMZ reports Monday. The band would try to withhold hundreds of thousands of dollars in royalties.
Cornell has sued the band members Kim Thayil, Matt Cameron, Ben Shepherd and their business manager Rit Venerus. According to the indictment "they collapsed shamelessly to withhold hundreds of thousands of dollars in royalties," which would actually belong to the deceased singer's family.
Chris Cornell, the singer of Soundgarden, died on May 18, 2017. Before his death, he made seven more audio recordings, in his own studio in Florida. According to the lawsuit filed, these recordings were not intended for the band, and were the exclusive property of Cornell.
After Cornell's death, the remaining Soundgarden members would have contacted his wife Vicky, because they wanted to use the recordings for a possible new album. They then agreed that they would share the recordings, provided that Vicky would be kept informed of the album marketing. She also wanted to work with a certain "trusted" producer for the album.
However, according to the complaint, Vicky no longer has any control over the recordings. She accuses Soundgarden of having taken away her rights to the recordings, as a result of which she will no longer receive royalties. She thinks the band is abusing her vulnerable status as a widow.
Soundgarden says he is entitled to the recordings
"It is shocking how often this happens. Not only with me, or with a rock star or a politician's widow: it happens almost all women who lose their partner (...) Family members with a heart of stone, friends and business partners : she exploits the vulnerability of a widow if she is broken and alone ", the singer's widow says on Instagram.
In response to the indictment, the Soundgarden lawyer wrote a letter stating that "all musical material that is saved on a hard disk by one or all of Soundgarden's members is owned by Soundgarden".