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Cheap Trick Sued From Inside

07:01 AM Thursday 7/25/13 | |

Longtime Cheap Trick manager Dave Frey and drummer Bun E. Carlos have jointly filed a lawsuit against the band, claiming breach of contract and lost proceeds.

  • Cheap Trick

    MMRBQ 2013, Susquehanna Bank Center, Camden, N.J.
    May 18, 2013

    (Owen Sweeney / OwenSweeneyPhoto.com)


Frey, who has managed the band since 1997, says they want to fire him but can’t because a binding decisions requires agreement from all four members.

Carlos is the holdout. However, Carlos – real name Brad Carlson – has seen his role in the band fade and is not touring with Cheap Trick.

Drumming duties are now done by the son of guitarist Rick Nielsen.

Meanwhile, the band now lists its management as Kevin Spellman of Vector Management, home to acts like Kings of Leon, Ke$ha and Pat Benatar – whom Cheap Trick has been touring with.

The lawsuit references the Unanimous Consent Agreement, which allegedly states all material decisions made by the band on behalf of their many companies and business matters must have unanimous consent. Carlos says he has an agreement with the band that says he does not need to participate in live performances but remains a full member and is entitled to continue to receive remuneration under the agreements.

However, Carlos claims the band has made several business decisions lately without compensating him. Frey says he received a termination notice from the original members, sans Carlos, June 21, 2012.

Frey claims that even if he was properly terminated his management agreement entitles him to two years’ worth of post-termination compensation. He also says he is owed nearly $72,000 after advancing the band about $360,000 on his American Express card following the “horrific accident in July 2011.”

  • Close Call

    Cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielsen walks past the main stage at Ottawa Bluesfest after it collapsed.
    July 17, 2011

    (AP Photo)


Cheap Trick was on stage at the Ottawa Bluesfest when the stage collapsed during gusty winds. The band has filed a $1 million lawsuit against the festival. Frey was known to carry a bolt from the stage with him. Frey had no comment, and a spokesman for the band told Pollstar a statement was unavailable at press time.


Artists Mentioned in this article