Former Slipknot drummer Chris Fehn’s attorney Joel B. Rothman made a public statement Wednesday (27th) about his client’s case against the band. In an interview with Rock Feed, Rothman discussed Fehn’s perspective in filing the suit, most notably how he was made to feel like a “second-class citizen” in the band.
On March 13, Fehn sued bandmates Corey Taylor and Shawn “Clown” Crahan, as well as business manager Rob Shore and a handful of the band’s business entities, alleging that he wasn’t getting his equal share of profits.
“The lawsuit came about because in order for Chris to continue to participate in the band and attend recording sessions for the album that the band is working on, he was presented with a very onerous take-it-or-leave-it, you’re-not-an-equal-member-of-the-band-type proposal.”
“If you had spent 20 years of your life devoted to an enterprise like Slipknot, where you had given your heart, your soul, your blood, your tears to making the band the best it could be the way that so many of its fans love, and then you were told you were a second-class citizen here, I doubt that anyone who’s listening to this would feel any differently from the way Chris felt. In speaking to his [other] attorneys… what we saw was that Chris, from the beginning of Slipknot, was treated like an equal, and it wasn’t until later, after the band had experienced success, that they began to treat Chris like less than equal.”
The case also alleges that not all members of the band were getting the same kind of managerial representation as others, and that some members of the band were earning money with the Slipknot name that wasn’t being shared fairly with every member. Originally, Fehn thought that there was only one business that was splitting the band’s earnings evenly, but recently found out that there were several others that he wasn’t aware of.
“What appears to have been going on is that management for the band appears to have been doing two things. Number one: representing individual members of the band while representing the band as a whole where their loyalties to individual members interfere with their ability to represent the whole band, especially if members of the band aren’t being treated equally.
So we noticed that going on. And we also noticed that information about the band and the band’s activities was being withheld by management from some band members, like Chris, but not from others.”
In the suit, Fehn and his attorneys seek access to the band’s accounting records to see how far back the alleged discrepancy goes in order to figure out what damages may have been accrued.
Rothman also spoke on Slipknot’s now deleted statement about Fehn’s dismissal from the band, which read in part:
“Chris knows why he is no longer a part of Slipknot. We are disappointed that he chose to point fingers and manufacture claims, rather than doing what was necessary to continue to be a part of Slipknot.”
“The suggestion that Chris did something personally to any member of the band, Chris rejects. The suggestion that Chris isn’t up to it musically is absolutely false. In fact, it’s our position that the band is going to miss Chris on the recordings it’s doing, the compositions it makes. There’s a reason why Chris is one of the composers on all the band’s work, why he is an important background vocalist and percussionist on all the band’s recordings, and for anyone to suggest that he doesn’t make a valuable contribution, I think, is gonna be absurd to anyone who follows the band.”
In other Slipknot news, the band released a teaser for their upcoming, as-yet-untitled sixth album, due out August 9. The band will be on the road with their Knotfest Roadshow North America tour from July 26 through September 8. Volbeat, Gojira and Behemoth will be joining the band as support on the tour.