Chris Cornell’s Widow Sues Soundgarden for Copyrights to Unreleased Songs

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The widow of the late Soundgarden frontman, Chris Cornell, has sued the band, its members, and business managers for copyright ownership of unreleased sound recordings and withholding royalties.

In her complaint, Cornell’s widow alleges the bandmates and business managers conspired to withhold hundreds of thousands in royalties owed her and Cornell’s minor children in an attempt to force his estate into turning over unreleased sound recordings Cornell created before his death. See Cornell v. Soundgarden, et al., 19-cv-25045 (S.D. Fla.). The federal suit claims Cornell solely authored the seven unreleased songs in dispute, as he had often pursued solo projects and other work as the lead singer of Audioslave. However, the band and its members allegedly claim the songs should be treated as a Soundgarden project. Cornell’s widow alleges the defendants have even resorted to extortion and harassment, as well as agitating Soundgarden’s fan base at a time when stalkers have already threatened both her and her minor children, requiring FBI intervention.

Through the suit, Cornell’s widow seeks a declaration of copyright ownership in the unreleased songs, an accounting, all unpaid royalties, and the return of Cornell’s personal property.

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