Tragic rocker Chris Cornell’s widow has accused his surviving Soundgarden bandmates of trying to “maliciously defame” her and “provoke her online stalkers”.
A new statement from her lawyer, Marty Singer, comes days after Kim Thayil, Matt Cameron, and Ben Shepherd filed legal papers in Washington state, claiming Vicky Cornell had locked them out of the band’s social media accounts, and the Soundgarden official website.
The trio asked a judge to order Vicky to hand over the passwords or include a final posting stating: “Soundgarden has temporarily suspended its official social media accounts due to pending litigation.”
In a post on Chris’ Instagram page, Singer wrote: “Ms. Cornell’s forthcoming motion will expose the truth about SOUNDGARDEN’s supposed social media accounts. Ms. Cornell created the social media accounts; grew the accounts by allowing them to trade on Chris’ then-existing, popular accounts; devoted her personal time and money in growing these accounts as SOUNDGARDEN displayed absolutely no interest in social media (unless it was to promote their solo projects).”
He went on: “Ms. Cornell has overseen these accounts for close to a decade. The fact that SOUNDGARDEN is unaware of the user-names and passwords for their alleged ‘own’ accounts confirms their utter lack of involvement in creating, growing and maintaining their alleged accounts.”
Claiming: “SOUNDGARDEN solely wants the social media accounts in order to maliciously defame Ms. Cornell, provoke her online stalkers… and to instigate third-parties to harass Ms. Cornell and her minor children,” Singer alleged: “While they now claim a sense of urgency, SOUNDGARDEN’s claim are a stale repacking of the claims that they filed in the Florida court in May of 2020 (sic).”
In December 2019, Vicky began legal proceedings against the surviving Soundgarden members, alleging they owed Cornell’s estate hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid royalties and the rights to seven unreleased recordings made before the singer’s death in 2017.
Thayil, Shepherd, and Cameron claimed Vicky had possession of the only existing multi-track recordings of the last Soundgarden tracks her late husband recorded, adding: “All of the band members jointly worked on these final tracks (but) Vicky now claims ownership of the final SOUNDGARDEN album.”
In February, Vicky sued the surviving members of Soundgarden over what she felt was an unfair buy-out for her stake in the band. In the lawsuit, she claimed the rockers had offered her just $300,000 (£217,0000) for Chris’ share. She insisted this was much lower than the real value of the Chris Cornell estate’s interests in the group.