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-   -   Quincy Jones set to sue Michael Jackson estate (http://forums.digitalspy.co.uk/showthread.php?t=1903473)

i4u 26-10-2013 10:36

Quincy Jones set to sue Michael Jackson estate
 
Legendary producer Quincy Jones claims Michael Jackson Productions and Sony royally ripped him off, he says that created a shell to divert millions of dollars away from what is rightfully his. He is looking for $10m.

Quote:

Jones has sued MJJ Productions and Sony ... claiming he owns a big chunk of "Off the Wall," "Thriller" and "Bad" because he produced all of them. Jones claims Sony and MJJ concocted a scheme to edit and remix the original songs and put them into new ventures such as the "This Is It" movie, the Cirque du Soleil stage show and the 25th Anniversary of the "Bad" album and then deny him royalties.
Howard Weitzman, lawyer for the Michael Jackson Estate, says the Estate is saddened by Quincy's action and to the best of their knowledge Jones has been appropriately compensated over approximately 35 years.

Susie_Wilcox 26-10-2013 10:45

Like my dad always used to say, there are no friends in business. If he's been duped then he's right to take action but really, like he needs the money? ruthless :cool:.

divingbboy 26-10-2013 10:47

Not good for his children, obviously, but anything that makes the vultures that are his wider family work for a living........

Blondie X 26-10-2013 10:50

Quincy Jones is a legend who made MJ what he was musically. Good on him for not lying back and getting royally screwed

Nellski 26-10-2013 10:56

If he is legally entitled to it then he should get what he is owed. Whether it impacts on Jacksons kids and family is not his fault

kaybee15 26-10-2013 11:11

Quote:

Originally Posted by Blondie X (Post 69408933)
Quincy Jones is a legend who made MJ what he was musically. Good on him for not lying back and getting royally screwed

Amen. Jackson's 'genius' was hugely aided and abetted by others, but unfortunately he was about as good at publicly acknowledging that as he was at paying his bills...

i4u 26-10-2013 11:14

Quote:

Originally Posted by Blondie X (Post 69408933)
Quincy Jones is a legend who made MJ what he was musically. Good on him for not lying back and getting royally screwed

John Landis, director of The Thriller video was another one who was ripped off in what sounds the same way. In 2009 he sued Jackson's company saying he was still owed $2.3 million for the 14 minute video.

Landis also asserted that he owned at least 50 percent of the “separated rights” to the Thriller video, which he said entitled him to “dramatic rights” derivations like stage adaptations.

brumilad 26-10-2013 14:46

I don't understand what he thinks he's entitled to.

Michael and/or his estate/record company took the songs Michael wrote and performed and they got someone else to produce new versions of them for new money making ventures. They can do that. Saying 'Well I produced the original and most successful versions' doesn't mean anything... he's got paid for those and still does. Just cause they get David Guetta to remix Dirty Diana 2013 doesn't mean Quincy should get a cut.

dee123 26-10-2013 14:52

Quote:

Originally Posted by brumilad (Post 69411873)
I don't understand what he thinks he's entitled to.

Michael and/or his estate/record company took the songs Michael wrote and performed and they got someone else to produce new versions of them for new money making ventures. They can do that. Saying 'Well I produced the original and most successful versions' doesn't mean anything... he's got paid for those and still does. Just cause they get David Guetta to remix Dirty Diana 2013 doesn't mean Quincy should get a cut.

If this is the case than i agree 100%

johartuk 26-10-2013 15:51

Quote:

Originally Posted by brumilad (Post 69411873)
I don't understand what he thinks he's entitled to.

Michael and/or his estate/record company took the songs Michael wrote and performed and they got someone else to produce new versions of them for new money making ventures. They can do that. Saying 'Well I produced the original and most successful versions' doesn't mean anything... he's got paid for those and still does. Just cause they get David Guetta to remix Dirty Diana 2013 doesn't mean Quincy should get a cut.

The way I understand it from reading the OP, Quincy wasn't consulted by MJ/Sony over the re-use of songs from the albums he produced. I suspect that Quincy created the original arrangements, and as long as some part of his arrangement remains in the remixed versions, he will have a claim to royalties.

i4u 26-10-2013 16:18

Quote:

Originally Posted by brumilad (Post 69411873)
I don't understand what he thinks he's entitled to.

Michael and/or his estate/record company took the songs Michael wrote and performed and they got someone else to produce new versions of them for new money making ventures. They can do that. Saying 'Well I produced the original and most successful versions' doesn't mean anything... he's got paid for those and still does. Just cause they get David Guetta to remix Dirty Diana 2013 doesn't mean Quincy should get a cut.

Surely as with John Landis it depends on the agreement between Jackson & Jones? I'm guessing the remixes were based on the recordings produced by Quincy Jones. Without those recordings there would be nothing to remix.

Quote:

Director John Landis sued Michael Jackson and a Broadway producer on Wednesday, claiming the pair lack the proper rights to adapt a stage production based on Thriller.

Landis, who co-wrote and directed the groundbreaking music video, sued the pop star and producer James L. Nederlander's company over the possible show.

Nederlander announced earlier this week that it had acquired the rights to Thriller and songs from Jackson's blockbuster album of the same name.
Mr Jackson did have a habit of stealing other peoples material rights. Paul Anka is another case in point.

CEThom 26-10-2013 16:18

Quote:

Originally Posted by divingbboy (Post 69408912)
Not good for his children, obviously, but anything that makes the vultures that are his wider family work for a living........

Neither his children nor his family benefits particularly from his Estate. The Estate is operated by two trustees - two lawyers he fired several years before he died and ordered to turn over all of his paper work, so quite why they a) were still his executors and b) still possessed his will has never been adequately explained.

The will names Jackson's mother and his three children (whose names are incorrect on the document, as is Jackson's own name) as 'beneficiaries' of the Estate. It states that the Estate must pay for these four beneficiaries' care and maintenance, as required. But the beneficiaries do not own the estate, have direct access to the money or have any decision-making powers.

The trustees of the Estate - the two lawyers - are paid a larger allowance from the Estate every year than any of the beneficiaries.

CEThom 26-10-2013 16:26

Quote:

Originally Posted by kaybee15 (Post 69409127)
Amen. Jackson's 'genius' was hugely aided and abetted by others, but unfortunately he was about as good at publicly acknowledging that as he was at paying his bills...

He thanked Quincy Jones in almost every awards acceptance speech he ever gave. Even awards for projects in which Quincy wasn't involved.

I personally find that the opposite is true; that music snobs like to strip Jackson of all credit for his own compositions and creations and blame all of his success on other people - even though the only common factor in all of Jackson's groundbreaking, record-breaking projects was Jackson himself.

Quincy Jones has worked on many projects over the years with many legendary artists. Yet he is still best-known for his production duties on Jackson's self-penned hits like Don't Stop Til You Get Enough, Billie Jean, Beat It, Wanna Be Startin Somethin, Bad, The Way You Make Me Feel, Smooth Criminal, etc. It was a collaboration between Jackson and Quincy which produced some of the most timeless and universally-loved pop songs in history. Quincy would be the first to go on record as saying it was a collaboration, too.

Many of the other legends Quincy worked with - like Frank Sinatra, Dinah Washington and Sammy Davis Jr - who music snobs contend are far better and more legitimate than Jackson, couldn't even write their own material. So they were coasting on someone else's lyrics and Quincy's production/arrangements. Jackson brought more to the table than they ever did.

What's indisputable is that none of Quincy's collaborations with any other artists has ever generated the sales, popularity, awards, acclaim, world records and overall acknowledgement and adulation that sprang from his work with Jackson. What differentiated Quincy's work with all those other artists from his work with Jackson? Jackson.

CEThom 26-10-2013 16:30

Quote:

Originally Posted by brumilad (Post 69411873)
I don't understand what he thinks he's entitled to.

Michael and/or his estate/record company took the songs Michael wrote and performed and they got someone else to produce new versions of them for new money making ventures. They can do that. Saying 'Well I produced the original and most successful versions' doesn't mean anything... he's got paid for those and still does. Just cause they get David Guetta to remix Dirty Diana 2013 doesn't mean Quincy should get a cut.

Here's your answer:

Quote:

Jones made agreements with Jackson in 1978 and 1985 for work on the singer's solo albums. The contracts are said to have stipulated that Jones be given the first opportunity to re-edit or remix any of the master recordings, that the coupling of master recordings with other recordings required his prior written consent, and that he be given producer credit for each of the master recordings. The deal also entitled the producer to additional compensation -- including upfront payment and a "backend" percentage -- in the event of remixed masters.

After the producer was hired, Jackson signed a recording agreement with Epic Records, a subsidiary of Sony. The record deal entitled Jones to payments, credit, the approval of biographical material and regular accounting. Jones contends that he is a third-party beneficiary of this recording agreement.

After Jackson's death on June 25, 2009, the King of Pop had a resurgence of popularity, and the executors of his estate and those who had control over his work attempted to exploit the public's appetite for new works. That October, Columbia Pictures released This Is It, from AEG Live and The Michael Jackson Company, which showed preparations for what would have been the singer's last concert tour. Two years later, Cirque du Soleil premiered a traveling theatrical show entitled "Michael Jackson: The Immortal Tour," which has grossed an estimated $300 million to date. This past May, Cirque du Soleil came out with a new production entitled "Michael Jackson: One." Soundtracks for both the film and the Cirque du Soleil productions have also been released.

The film and its soundtrack included re-edits of songs like "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough," "She's Out of My Life," "Thriller," "Beat It," "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'," and "Billy Jean." The Cirque du Soleil production and album included re-edits of many of those songs as well as "Burn the Disco Out," "Workin' Day and Night," "Baby Be Mine" and more.

Jones says the terms of his deal were breached when MJJ allowed third parties to exploit these works "without first providing a reasonable opportunity to Jones to perform such remixes and/or re-edits."

Then, the complaint goes into "clandestine agreements" allegedly made that had the effect of reducing Jones' royalties.

The lawsuit states Jones' belief that the Jackson parties "secretly entered into a venture agreement with Sony" where Sony and the Jackson Label would share profits. But Jones also alleges that rights to the master recordings "reverted from Sony to MJJ" and albums featuring the performances of Jackson were "distributed by the Jackson Label, instead of Sony, including albums embodying one or more of the Masters."

Thus, the defendants are charged with an effort to "divert" revenues to MJJ and "disguise" the revenues as "profits" instead of "royalties."

According to the lawsuit, "By removing such Disguised Royalties from the pool of revenues upon which Jones' royalties are calculated, MJJ purposely reduces the royalties … payable to Jones under both of the Agreements."

The lawsuit alleges another secret agreement between Sony and producers of the This Is It film. Sony-owned master recordings were licensed, but the deal allegedly "divides the compensation payable to Sony into one portion designated for the master use licenses (the "Master Use License Fees") and another portion paid directly to MJJ (the "Additional Fees").

This is another way that Jones figures he's been deprived of royalties due to him, and it's further said that "the Master Use License Fees do not represent the fair market value, negotiated in good faith, to license the masters used in the Film."
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr...lawsuit-651045

dorydaryl 26-10-2013 16:30

Not that I was a great fan of MJ himself (although I did like his music) but it seems like too many people, including his own kin, are wanting a piece of him even after he's dead. It's like vultures ravaging a corpse. Very sad. The only people who should get anything are his children and perhaps the charities he supported and looks what's happened there. Despicable, the lot of them.

i4u 26-10-2013 16:37

Quote:

Originally Posted by CEThom (Post 69413253)
Neither his children nor his family benefits particularly from his Estate. The Estate is operated by two trustees - two lawyers he fired several years before he died and ordered to turn over all of his paper work, so quite why they a) were still his executors and b) still possessed his will has never been adequately explained.....

Is this the multi award winning Charles Thomson by any chance?

CEThom 26-10-2013 16:37

Quote:

Originally Posted by dorydaryl (Post 69413435)
The only people who should get anything are his children and perhaps the charities he supported

I forgot to mention earlier - a number of charities are also 'beneficiaries' of Jackson's estate. The will produced by the lawyers he fired said that his mother was a 40% beneficiary (up to 40% of the Estate value can be spent on her welfare if necessary), his children are 40% beneficiaries and a number of charities are 20% beneficiaries.

The lawyers get paid more annually than his mother or his children, and to date the Estate has never paid anything to any of the listed charities.

The IRS is currently pursuing the Jackson Estate over an alleged $700million tax deficit. Paperwork in the case reveals that the Estate's tax returns listed the value of Jackson's image at around $2,000 - less than a used car. The Estate denies any wrongdoing.

brumilad 26-10-2013 16:48

Quote:

Originally Posted by i4u (Post 69413242)
Surely as with John Landis it depends on the agreement between Jackson & Jones?

You're comparing apples and oranges. John Landis sued because he wrote Thriller. Quincy Jones did not write or compose thriller... he produced.

CEThom 26-10-2013 16:50

Quote:

Originally Posted by brumilad (Post 69413739)
You're comparing apples and oranges. John Landis sued because he wrote Thriller. Quincy Jones did not write or compose thriller... he produced.

Check out the article I posted a few posts up, about Jones's contracts for this production work.

"The contracts are said to have stipulated that Jones be given the first opportunity to re-edit or remix any of the master recordings, that the coupling of master recordings with other recordings required his prior written consent, and that he be given producer credit for each of the master recordings. The deal also entitled the producer to additional compensation -- including upfront payment and a "backend" percentage -- in the event of remixed masters."

maninthequeue 26-10-2013 17:00

To me this is a very straightforward case which Quincy Jones should win, as because he produced the original master recordings; then unless the remixes just take Michael Jackson's vocal stems and build a completely different set of instrumentation to it; then Quincy Jones is entitled to production royalties.

brumilad 26-10-2013 17:13

Quote:

Originally Posted by CEThom (Post 69413772)
Check out the article I posted a few posts up, about Jones's contracts for this production work.

Thanks, that does make it clear.

To be honest it all seems a bit record company/Jackson estate finding loopholes round uber-producer's over-entitled contract.

i4u 26-10-2013 17:27

Quote:

Originally Posted by brumilad (Post 69413739)
You're comparing apples and oranges. John Landis sued because he wrote Thriller. Quincy Jones did not write or compose thriller... he produced.

If you'll excuse the joke.

Well I think you are bananas if you think along those lines. :D

CEThom 26-10-2013 23:22

Here's Quincy's full lawsuit, including copies of his original contracts from the 70s and 80s.

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/sit...uincyjones.pdf

kaybee15 27-10-2013 01:53

Quote:

Originally Posted by CEThom (Post 69413377)
He thanked Quincy Jones in almost every awards acceptance speech he ever gave. Even awards for projects in which Quincy wasn't involved.

I personally find that the opposite is true; that music snobs like to strip Jackson of all credit for his own compositions and creations and blame all of his success on other people - even though the only common factor in all of Jackson's groundbreaking, record-breaking projects was Jackson himself.

Quincy Jones has worked on many projects over the years with many legendary artists. Yet he is still best-known for his production duties on Jackson's self-penned hits like Don't Stop Til You Get Enough, Billie Jean, Beat It, Wanna Be Startin Somethin, Bad, The Way You Make Me Feel, Smooth Criminal, etc. It was a collaboration between Jackson and Quincy which produced some of the most timeless and universally-loved pop songs in history. Quincy would be the first to go on record as saying it was a collaboration, too.

Many of the other legends Quincy worked with - like Frank Sinatra, Dinah Washington and Sammy Davis Jr - who music snobs contend are far better and more legitimate than Jackson, couldn't even write their own material. So they were coasting on someone else's lyrics and Quincy's production/arrangements. Jackson brought more to the table than they ever did.

What's indisputable is that none of Quincy's collaborations with any other artists has ever generated the sales, popularity, awards, acclaim, world records and overall acknowledgement and adulation that sprang from his work with Jackson. What differentiated Quincy's work with all those other artists from his work with Jackson? Jackson.


I was possibly a little unfair on Jackson - I can't abide awards ceremonies so have not seen him thanking Jones. In the interviews with MJ that I personally recall, Jones rarely got a mention.

As far as their collaboration goes, I am sure both sides would praise the other. It's worth noting, however, that as much as
Jones has enjoyed his most successful period with MJ, the reverse is also very true...

CEThom 27-10-2013 13:03

Quote:

Originally Posted by kaybee15 (Post 69427938)
I was possibly a little unfair on Jackson - I can't abide awards ceremonies so have not seen him thanking Jones. In the interviews with MJ that I personally recall, Jones rarely got a mention.

As far as their collaboration goes, I am sure both sides would praise the other. It's worth noting, however, that as much as
Jones has enjoyed his most successful period with MJ, the reverse is also very true...

That is true to an extent, but it's worth remembering that much of Jackson's acclaim was for his innovation of the music video and his phenomenal live performances. Quincy can't be credited with those.

I do personally feel that some of Jackson's best music came after his collaborations with Quincy Jones, but would fully accept that he was less consistent. Then again, he only put out one full album post-Quincy before his addiction problems really kicked in, so it's not really a fair comparison.


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