Former Journey bassist Ross Valory has filed a lawsuit against the band’s Neal Schon and Jonathan Cain for firing him after he and drummer Steve Smith attempted a “coup” to take over the band.
In his suit, Valory charges breach of contract and emotional distress, and is seeking “past and future compensatory damages.” He also wants the judge to decide who has the right to move forward using the band name.
His attorney, Andrew Spielberger, says, “Ross is shocked and devastated by the conduct of his lifelong bandmates, and is disappointed that there was never any attempt to sit down and discuss what is most likely a misunderstanding and something that easily could have been worked out.”
Valory adds that he and Smith were not trying to assume control of Nightmare Productions Inc., the corporate entity that controls the band’s name and trademark, saying it was a “deceptive, misleading and false premise.” He says that the board was trying to protect the Journey brand after Schon attempted to trademark his other band, Journey Through Time.
Valory says he was “merely participating in a legitimate vote to change the number of directors of Nightmare Productions Inc.”
As a result of his actions, he and Smith were fired from the band, but still remain members of the board of Nightmare Productions.
Valory and Schon are original members of Journey.