Ex-Destroyers member sues over royalties

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By SEAN O'SULLIVAN, The News Journal
Posted Tuesday, July 3, 2007

WILMINGTON -- A former member of George Thorogood's band, the Delaware Destroyers, claims he is not getting his fair share of royalties in a federal suit.

He also says the band's refusal to release him from a 2002 recording contract has prevented him from earning a living as a musician.

The suit, filed by Delaware resident Henry G. "Hurricane" Carter, is similar to a lawsuit he filed, and subsequently dropped, last year in federal court.

Carter's attorneys refused to comment and Thorogood and his representatives could not be located for comment. Thorogood is a Wilmington native and a Brandywine High School graduate.

The lawsuit says Carter joined the band, which later dropped "Delaware" from its name, in 1979 and played saxophone, keyboards, guitar, trumpet, mandolin and was "involuntarily released" in 2003 for unspecified reasons.

"The fortunes of the band changed dramatically during Carter's tenure and the band enjoyed significant commercial success," according to the lawsuit.

One of the band's biggest hits, "Bad to the Bone," was released in 1982 and featured in the 1991 film "Terminator 2: Judgment Day."

The lawsuit said despite Carter's departure, he was "entitled to be compensated for the good will he helped create for the band during his two-decade tenure."

This apparently includes revenue from albums recorded since his departure and tours that have taken place without him.

Carter alleges that since his departure, his 20 percent share of the royalties of record sales has been subjected to an unexplained "17 percent management fee."

The suit also alleges that he only received "11/16ths of his agreed 20 percent"of the royalties on a recent greatest-hits album, where his work appears on 11 of 16 tracks "and was charged again for phantom 'management fees.' "

The lawsuit charges breach of contract and demands an accurate accounting of royalty payments and restoration of his full royalties from recording, touring and merchandising revenues.

A March announcement indicated that Carter recently joined the certified public accounting firm of Belfint, Lyons & Shuman P.A. in Wilmington as a staff accountant in the small-business department.

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This page contains a single entry by fountainhead published on July 19, 2007 12:10 AM.

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