Former Cameo Members Hit Lead Singer Larry Blackmon With Million Dollar Lawsuit
It’s no secret the members of Cameo have been at odds for quite some time. But, now they’re makin’ it clear they want their money and they want Larry Blackmon to pay up.
According to The Blast, court documents have revealed Nathan Leftenant, Arnett Leftenant, Jeryl Bright and Gregory Johnson, have filed a complaint against Lawrence “Larry” Blackmon over unpaid royalties. Although they have accused Blackmon of taking an estimated $103,005.03, they are asking for a staggering amount to cover punitive damages for the loss of compensation.
Million Dollar Damages:
It has been reported that in addition to the $100K Blackmon allegedly pocketed on behalf of Cameo, he is also said to have started a Las Vegas residency back in 2015. So, how did he capitalize on the residency without the whole group? Well, he reportedly used the Cameo name without the consent of the former members and that’s another reason why they’re all givin’ him the side eye.
The four former members claim that in 2010, Blackmon began collecting royalties on behalf of the band, saying he would pay the other members their share. They claim Blackmon took in $103,005.30 and never paid them a dime.
But not only are they demanding their cut from the six-figure profit Blackmon pocketed from royalties, they are also demanding a major cut from the profits he earned from the live performances in Las Vegas. Since there are five members involved, they believe they all are entitled to 20% each, which is why they are petitioning for “80% of the profits from live performances and other appearances using the Cameo trademark.”
However, the guys aren’t stoppin’ there. They also want to be compensated for punitive damages and that’s where the situation really gets interesting. For punitive damages, the guys are demanding a cool million for the financial losses they suffered. Although the request seems fair enough, it’s probably going to be a major hit for Blackmon.
Cameo’s Beef Reminiscent Of Gap Band’s Beef:
Although Cameo is makin’ headlines right now, they aren’t the first 80s group to clash over money and royalties. Cameo’s drama comes a couple years after the big fallout with the Gap Band.
For those who missed all of that, Charlie Wilson and his own brother, Ronnie Wilson, were at odds over money. At the time, an infuriated Ronnie accused Charlie – who reportedly quick the group back in 2009 – of sabotaging his efforts to book a comeback tour. In his lawsuit, he claimed Charlie would “come in after Ronnie has already booked a show or a deal, and interfere and will usually pull the plug on his bookings.”
Ronnie’s new Gap Band had reportedly booked two shows in D.C. and New York and they were set to make a quick $20,000 but Charlie shut it all down. For Ronnie, that was the last straw and the reason why he decided to go the legal route to handle his beef with Charlie.
But Charlie made it clear he wasn’t backin’ down. When TMZ caught up with him, he was asked about the beef with his brothers. In so many words, he made it clear that his brothers could not – and would not – be using the Gap Band name to book shows he wasn’t part of. Ronnie may have been ticked, but Charlie seemed completely unbothered.
This kind of drama doesn’t die easily, especially when there’s money on the table. Like the Gap Band, Cameo could be at the beginning of a very long legal battle.