The surviving members of SOUNDGARDEN have responded to a lawsuit filed last week by Chris Cornell‘s widow— Vicky Cornell — saying a buyout offer they made to her “has been grossly mischaracterized.”
In the lawsuit, Vicky Cornell says Kim Thayil, Matt Cameron and Ben Shepherd offered her just $300,000 for Chris‘s share. This amount, she says, is far lower than the real value of the Chris Cornell estate’s interests in SOUNDGARDEN, especially considering the fact that the band got an offer of $16 million from an outside investor for SOUNDGARDEN‘s masters.
Now, Thayil, Shepherd and Cameron issued the following statement: “The buyout offer that was demanded by the Estate has been grossly mischaracterized and we are confident that clarity will come out in court. All offers to buy out our interests have been unsolicited and rejected outright.
“For more than a year, SOUNDGARDEN‘s social media accounts have been hijacked; misleading and confusing our fans.
“Being a band from Washington State since 1984, we are proud of SOUNDGARDEN‘s musical legacy, work and career. We look forward to completing the final SOUNDGARDEN album.”
A representative for SOUNDGARDEN previously told TMZ: “As requested by the Estate of Chris Cornell and as required by the laws of the State of Washington, the surviving members of SOUNDGARDEN submitted to the Cornell Estate four months ago a buy-out offer of the Estate’s interests in SOUNDGARDEN calculated by respected music industry valuation expert Gary Cohen.”
“This dispute has never been about money for the band. This is their life’s work and their legacy.”
The Cornell estate’s lawyer, Marty Singer, then responded: “The band’s contention that this dispute is somehow not about the money for them is absurd and hypocritical. Of course this is about money and their greed.
“They received a third party offer to buy just a portion of their interests for 16 million dollars, and yet subsequently offered to buy out Chris‘ interest for a mere $278,000. And then Vicky offered $21 million for their shares, which they turned down — not because they wanted to preserve their life’s work but because they know that they will make even more off of future exploitation of the music that Chris wrote and the legacy that he created (which has lined their pockets for years).”
On May 18, 2017, Cornell was found hanged by his bodyguard in the bathroom of his hotel room at the MGM Grand in Detroit, Michigan, after performing at a show with SOUNDGARDEN at the Fox Theatre on May 17. The death was ruled a suicide.