Motley Crue have responded to a lawsuit filed against them by former guitarist Mick Mars. (See story below.)
Mick claims that he's still a member and wants to see the band's financial records because he feels he's been shortchanged. But Sasha Frida, the band's attorney, says, "After the last tour, Mick publicly resigned... Despite the fact that the band did not owe Mick anything -- and with Mick owing the band millions in advances that he did not pay back -- the band offered Mick a generous compensation package (7.5%) to honor his career with the band. Manipulated by his manager and lawyer, Mick refused and chose to file this ugly public lawsuit.”
Mars will continue to get royalties from publishing and recordings, but he's not entitled to be a shareholder in anything else going forward. He says he was asked to sign away all future compensation from the band’s businesses -- except for any merchandise that bears his likeness -- in return for that share of the current tour’s profits.
Variety inquired about the discrepancy between the attorney's statement Thursday that Mars “publicly resigned,” and his own press release of last October that said, “Mick will continue as a member of the band, but can no longer handle the rigors of the road.”
Frid says, “That’s correct. Retiring from touring is resigning from the band. The band’s primary function is to tour and perform concerts. And as you saw from the amendment, if a shareholder resigns, he cannot receive any compensation from touring -- which is what Mick is trying to get. It’s clear-cut that Mick is not entitled to any more money.”
The 71-year old Mars, the oldest member of the band, says he resigned due to an aggressive form of arthritis known as Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), which makes it difficult to play and travel. But in his suit, Mars says he's able to record and play the occasional show, and that he has not given up any rights as a one-quarter shareholder in the band’s many companies.
Frid goes on to say, “Mick’s lawsuit is unfortunate and completely off-base. In 2008, Mick voted for and signed an agreement in which he and every other band member agreed that ‘in no event shall any resigning shareholder be entitled to receive any monies attributable to live performances (i.e., tours).’”
And, in response to Mars saying he was the only member of the band who performed live 100% of the time on last year's Stadium Tour, Frid says, “Equally unfortunate are his claims about the band’s live performances. Motley Crue always performs its songs live, but during the last tour, Mick struggled to remember chords, played the wrong songs and made constant mistakes which led to his departure from the band. There are multiple declarations from the band’s crew attesting to his decline.
"The band did everything to protect him (and) tried to keep these matters private to honor Mick’s legacy and take the high road. Unfortunately, Mick chose to file this lawsuit to badmouth the band. The band feels empathy for Mick, wishes him well and hopes that he can get better guidance from his advisors who are driven by greed.”
Mars filed his suit in response to the band filing one to take him to arbitration. No date has been set for the arbitration.
Motley Crue replaced Mars with John 5.