Ozzy Osbourne‘s legal team has responded to a motion by the promoters AEG to dismiss his lawsuit against them.
At issue is a policy whereby artists who play AEG’s London venue, the O2 Arena, are forced contractually to play Staples Center in Los Angeles, which the promoter also controls. AEG insists that since Live Nation, the promoter of Osbourne’s current No More Tours 2 tour, and not Osbourne himself, signed that agreement with O2 that Ozzy can’t sue the company and he has the freedom to play wherever he wants in L.A.
But Osbourne’s attorneys insist that AEG’s claims are misleading and that the company knows that the policy essentially makes artists play its L.A. venue, whether they want to or not. They also say that as Osbourne’s business representative, Live Nation’s signature on the deal is as binding as if he had signed it himself.
Finally, Ozzy’s legal reps contend that while O2 Arena is the only London venue it makes financial sense for Ozzy to play, there are several in L.A. where he can perform. They feel Osbourne is being injured by AEG’s anti-competitive practices because if he wants to play their London venue, he actually can’t play where he wants in L.A.
There’s another layer at work here that has to do with a booking war between AEG and Azoff MSG, which owns the rival Forum in L.A. AEG claims it enacted the linkage between playing the O2 in London and Staples in L.A. because of a similar contractual link between playing MSG’s Madison Square Garden in New York and the Forum in L.A. (Amplify)
In other Ozzy related news.
Ozzy Osbourne bassist Blasko — who’s also played with Ron Zombie, Danzig and Prong — has launched a new podcast called A New Level. The first 10 episodes are streaming now.