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Soundgarden File Countersuit Against Widow Of Chris Cornell, Vicky Cornell Fires Back At Band (Updated)


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Update: May 07th, 2020 09:20 AM:

Vicky Cornell has fired back at Soundgarden over their claims in this latest countersuit, responding both herself via social media and through her lawyer, Marty Singer. Speaking via her Instagram stories, Vicky provided documentation of a donation form for $650,000 to the Epidermolysis Bullosa Medical Research Foundation filed on April 19th, 2019.

She also posted several messages via that Instagram story, they read:

“As my beloved Chris would say, ‘They’ve reached a whole new low.’ A very easily disproven one…”

“When you attack the foundation, you attack my husband’s legacy. The foundation has nothing to do with the issue of who owns Chris’s vocal recordings. Their knowingly false allegations are a deliberate attempt to not just harm my credibility but the Foundation my husband and I created and everything WE stand for…”

“Times are gone for honest men and sometimes too far along for snakes… #noonesingslikeyouanymore”

“PS -yes- I had to be there, his children and his family had to be there -at the event I organized and made happen in honor and in tribute to the greatest husband and father -in honor of his legacy, his music and philanthropy

#ChrisCornellForever”

“#truthalwaysprevails

All monies in and out of foundations are public information -everyone is aware the event took place in Jan 2019- that means you purposely added this bogus claim knowing that 1040s not even due yet…

Be prepared to stand behind your accusation. You have played dirty this entire time…You can pretend publicly but you go to bed knowing what he’d think and do…. But I guess, sadly, I finally understand, it does explain why you didn’t turn the bus around.”

The last line refers to a characterization of the band Vicky made in her earlier complaints, alleging the band had been uncaring in the wake of Chris‘ death. Chris took his own life in a Detroit, MI hotel after playing a show with the band. According to the band, they had opted to continue by bus to the next city on the tour and found out about his passing on social media while already en route. The band have previously detailed how they mourned the death of Chris in a group gathering with the road crew in Columbus.

Meanwhile, Vicky‘s lawyer Marty Singer‘s statement on the countersuit, as issued to Rollingstone.com, reads:

“It is unfortunate that Chris Cornell’s three former bandmates – who have made millions of dollars from Chris’ hard work, talent and creativity – continue to attack Chris’ legacy, his widow, and his young children by making salacious, scurrilous, and vicious allegations in order to distract from the truth.

Their transparently desperate counterclaims – which were intentionally filed shortly before the eve of the anniversary of Chris’ death and the eve of Chris and Vicky’s wedding anniversary – do not change the fact that they are the ones who have improperly asserted ownership of vocal recordings that were created solely by Chris and that they are the ones who have unlawfully withheld substantial sums of money from Chris’ widow and children (which is the very basis for the current lawsuit).

Suffice it to say that Vicky Cornell and the Cornell Estate vehemently deny the supposed “facts” contained in Soundgarden’s counterclaims, which will be met with swift legal action.

It is ironic that Chris’ former bandmates now feign outrage over the 2019 Chris Cornell Tribute Concert conducted by Chris’s foundation – which raised over $1 million for the Charity Foundation and paid over $650,000 for EBMRF for medical research and which has nothing whatsoever to do with the issue of who owns Chris’ vocal recordings – – when Soundgarden received over $78,000 to perform at the charity concert .

As Chris’ former band members are well aware, every single penny of the proceeds generated by the concert were properly allocated and accounted for and their statements are not only false and defamatory but demonstrate the depths to which Chris’ former bandmates are willing to sink to tarnish his legacy.

It is also ironic that, after spending substantial time and attorneys’ fees (paid for out of the monies owed to Chris’ estate) arguing that the Florida court system lacks personal jurisdiction over them, Chris’ former bandmates have now sought relief from that very same court system by filing their counterclaims.”

Original Story:

The legal back and forth between Soundgarden and the widow of their late frontman Chris Cornell continues with a new development. You may recall that the band’s surviving members, Kim Thayil, Matt Cameron and Ben Shepherd, have been locked in a legal battle with Vicky Cornell over the recordings Chris laid down prior to his 2017 suicide.

Chris and the band had been thought to be working on material for a new Soundgarden album with Chris having communicated as much to the press. However, the ownership of the seven recordings and the writing lineage of them remains disputed by Vicky, who apparently remains in possession of the recordings.

Vicky for her part alleged that the band have since been holding out on paying the Chris Cornell estate the share of her late husband’s Soundgarden owed royalties in a bid to strong-arm her into turning over the disputed recordings. You can catch up on those earlier proceedings here.

As for this latest happening, Rolling Stone have obtained a new countersuit filed by the band today, May 06th, which finds them accusing Vicky and the Chris Cornell estate of ‘fraudulent inducement.’ To that end the band allege that their January 16th, 2019 live performance at the star-studded Chris Cornell tribute show, ‘I Am The Highway: A Tribute to Chris Cornell‘, was done for free as per an oral agreement with Vicky.

In exchange for performing for free, they claim Vicky was to donate the estimated millions of dollars in proceeds to charitable purposes. The band claim that no record of any donations was ever provided to them, with no benefiting organization having been identified. As per the suit, the band allege, “Vicky Cornell did not have the intention of using some or all of the revenue from the Cornell Concert for charitable purposes, but rather for personal purposes for herself and her family.”

The band claim they were duped into performing for free under false terms and suffered both damages and reputational harm in turn. The countersuit also finds the band disputing Vicky‘s previous complaint, offering:

“The Complaint is an offensive recitation of false allegations and accusations. Soundgarden categorically denies every material contention lobbed by Vicky Cornell, who filed her Complaint — rashly and without good cause — with the true purpose of extorting Soundgarden into conceding rights to which she is not legally entitled, and of coercing Soundgarden to prematurely distribute Soundgarden funds to her.”

The band’s countersuit also takes issue with Vicky‘s access to the band’s social media accounts and how she represents the band on them. Soundgarden are seeking a jury trial to resolve the dispute. You can find a full of the band’s countersuit over at Rolling Stone.

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