Kid Rock's former manager, Stephen Hutton, has filed a $4 million breach of contract suit against the Detroit rocker, claiming that he was unjustly fired after helping resuscitate Rock's previously dormant career.
Hutton's lawyers filed the federal lawsuit on Monday, July 10, in the United States District Court in Manhattan. In the complaint, Hutton, who managed Kid Rock from 1994 until just a few weeks ago, alleges breach of contract and unjust enrichment, and is asking for compensatory damages as well as a portion of Kid Rock's future earnings.
Kid Rock's record label, Atlantic Records, offered no comment on the suit. However, Hutton's lawyers issued a statement on Wednesday claiming that prior to Hutton's involvement in Kid Rock's career, the singer (real name Bob Ritchie) was "an unknown, struggling artist" whose early albums had received only a "lukewarm response."
"Even though Kid Rock had been dropped twice by other record labels and white
hip-hop was non-existent at the time, I believed in Bob and what he was doing," Hutton told MTV News on Thursday. "It saddens me, after working so closely together for seven years, that I have to pursue legal action to get what I've earned."
Hutton claims that he was a principal player in helping Ritchie ink a lucrative contract with Atlantic Records, a deal that led to Rock's multi-platinum major-label debut, 1998's "Devil Without A Cause."
The manager also helped re-secure the rights to Kid Rock's earlier albums, songs and material from which are featured on Kid Rock's just-issued "The History Of Rock" LP, which is currently in the Top 10 of the "Billboard" album chart.
The suit alleges that Hutton was entitled to 15 percent of Kid Rock's gross income under the terms of his management contract, and that Rock dismissed Hutton after Hutton failed to settle for a monetary amount less than what he was owed.
In the meantime, Kid Rock is currently
winding down his stint on the Summer Sanitarium tour, an outing also featuring Metallica, Korn, Powerman 5000, and System Of A Down that is slated to wrap up on July 16 in Queen Creek, Arizona.
After an appearance at the Hard Rock Rockfest in Chicago on July 22, Kid Rock plans to kick off his own tour on August 2 in Evansville, Indiana (see "Kid Rock Lines Up Headlining Dates").