The royalty battle between the estates of the late members of The Jimi Hendrix Experience has moved forward with the estates of bassist Noel Redding and drummer Mitch Michell filing a new lawsuit.
As previously reported, attorney Lawrence Abramson filed a lawsuit in New York state on behalf of the Redding and Mitchell estates claiming they are owed “royalties for some 3 billion streams of the Experience’s songs” by Experience Hendrix, LLC and Sony Music Entertainment.
In response, Experience Hendrix, LLC has countersued claiming Redding and Mitchel had signed agreements in April 1973 and September 1974, respectively, for an undisclosed amount of money that released the Hendrix estate from any legal claims and agreed never to sue the Hendrix estate.
Per Variety, the Redding and Mitchell estates have filed a new lawsuit in London’s High Court against Sony Music U.K. “alleging copyright infringement and seeking royalties.”
Variety notes, “The U.K. lawsuit seeks a declaration of copyright ownership in the musical works, sound recordings and performers rights (each of which are a separate right invested in the work), a declaration as to whether there has been copyright infringement and, if there has, damages as well as an account of profits plus interest on that figure and legal costs…However, in a pre-action letter sent by a lawyer for Redding and Mitchell’s estates to Sony Music in the U.K., which Variety has seen, the musicians’ heirs dispute that, saying the contracts do not ‘operate as a bar to our clients’ claims.’…The pre-action letter to Sony adds that none of the signed documents or contracts extend to streaming rights or digital media revenue, which ‘none of the parties would have been able to foresee or contemplate’ at the time they were signed.”
Neither the Hendrix estate nor Sony has responded to the new lawsuit.