Former Machine Head Bassist Adam Duce Sues Band

Bassist claims he didn't "make enough money to live within his modest means" despite group's high earnings.

Former Machine Head Bassist Adam Duce Sues Band
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Ex-Machine Head bassist Adam Duce is officially suing his former band on multiple counts, including the alleged trademark infringement, breach of partnership agreement, defamation and more.

As Courthouse New Service notes, Duce had quit the band because he was "sick of it," claiming that although Machine Head was formed as a partnership under which each member owned 25 percent, frontman Robb Flynn was the one getting the biggest cut.

"Despite their increase in popularity and touring revenue, plaintiff became concerned with how little income he was receiving, despite the time and hard work put in to developing the Band," the complaint reads.

"Despite plaintiff's expressed concerns, he was unable to make enough money to live within his modest means," the report adds. "Because of this, when the band was not touring, plaintiff supplemented his income as a licensed real estate appraiser."

Duce further claims that he was fired just before the new record deal was signed so the other members would make more money. Additionally, he pointed at Flynn for "directly attacking plaintiff's work ethic" through several online statements, such as "We may have fired Adam on 2-11-13, but Adam quit Machine Head well over a decade ago. He just never bothered to tell anyone ... but we all knew it."

The bassist also noted that no agreement was ever made about his share in the band's future royalties, adding that his former bandmates "simply kicked him out of the band and presumed he would forget about over two decades of hard work, dedication, and effort he put into the Band."

In conclusion, Duce is suing Machine Head for punitive damages for trademark infringement, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of partnership agreement, intentional and negligent interference with prospective economic relations, negligence, defamation and unfair competition, adding he also wants the band enjoined from using the Machine Head marks.

Adam parted ways with the group back in February 2013, as the band announced an "amicable split" in a brief surprising statement.

101 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    Shametome
    It's always a money issue.
    Izzy-Sweet
    Ah, I see you're new here. Let me introduce you: This, is planet Earth! Our main life source is oxygen which comes from trees (which we destroy because we're stupid) and the main delicacies can be found in places called "restaurants" and "supermarkets". Enjoy your stay, and remember; money is EVIL!
    Wishort
    Wait... was that supposed to be funny? Oh..
    Izzy-Sweet
    It was for like... the half minute I spent writing it. I then read it back and thought "Yeah.. this ain't as funny as I'd planed", but I'd written it and felt I may as well post it. So hey, you all get to enjoy my awful joke!
    ammy73546
    before I looked at the paycheck which said $5932, I have faith that my cousin had been trully receiving money in their spare time on their laptop.. there sisters roommate has done this 4 only twenty one months and a short time ago paid the debts on their condo and bought a gorgeous Saab 99 Turbo. i was reading this ----- WWW.STAR58.COM
    bit64
    Why is always the rhythm section underpaid?
    vikkyvik
    Because they're the rhythm section.
    tukk04
    If it wasn't for the rhythm section you'd just be a douche wanking his guitar all alone or worse, to a backing track, and nobody wants to watch that. As brootal as you think your riffs may be, your songs would be as energetic as a tuesday in an old folks' home without drums and bass. I (and most musicians) would never want to play with someone that lacks respect for others chosen instruments, and I say this from another guitarist's point of view
    Eggmond
    What a Murderface
    Loftus17
    I just looked at the song writing credits for every machine head album and I dont understand how he can complain. For the first three albums, he received 25% credit for writing the music, but after the burning read he contributed to less than 5 songs. How does he expect royalties if he doesnt write anything?
    iommi600
    Seriously, bassists and drummers should get together and form a trade union.
    tukk04
    That would solve a lot of problems and would gain rhythm sections the respect they deserve, but are rarely given.
    tukk04
    That would solve a lot of problems and would gain rhythm sections the respect they deserve, but are rarely given.
    Zan595
    Well, this is one side of the story. The rest of the band's was that his work ethic sucked, and if he isn't contributing enough, he shouldn't be earning as much. I'd have to hear more specifics on this, but it seems reasonable that you get less pay/royalties for less work.
    Witt1975
    I don't get it... He played on the albums, played the live shows and sang back up, sounds like he's doing what everyone else in the band was doing, their jobs. He may not have been super motivated or whatever but he was still doing his job. He was still getting songwriting credits and such. The thing is, only the band really knows the true story. Not a huge Duce fanboy or anything, just hard to make conclusions when we don't know all the facts.
    Zan595
    Exactly. Can't judge this situation without the facts, which I'll probably never get, but it smells "Murderface"-ish to me.
    fromzero
    Halo is the song that broke them onto that next level and Adam wrote that. The intro to Darkness Within is so haunting and Adam wrote that too. That song was a huge win for them as far as $ is concerned.
    iduno871
    When the band signs a paper that says each member will get %25, then that's what each member should get regardless of any issues with work ethic, popularity, etc.
    jordo246
    This is exactly what I thought, as far as I know the albums that Machine Head gets the most credit for are written mostly by Flynn and sometimes Demmel. It's like what Dave Mustaine said in his biography, everyone in the band wanted more money during the 90's yet 95% of the music was coming from Dave.
    MrDo0m
    He should be paid what he was agreed to beforehand, regardless of how his bandmates felt his work ethic was. If they don't pay him what they agreed to beforehand, they are in the wrong, pure and simple.
    morbidguitar
    Its great reading about this kinda stuff. Really goes to show how HARD it is to continue as a band without Personal, Legal, Financial, etc issues. Its a daily battle I know all too well.
    gorkyporky
    I think Robb gets more simply because he is the main songwriter. And if his work ethics really sucked, then i would understand the other guys completely. So that kinda makes sense. That being said, he really should have been getting enough to not need a second job, being in one of the biggest metal bands around and all that.
    fromzero
    He writes the lyrics, the vocal melodies, rhythm and some lead. Thats 3 points.
    Jmoarguitar
    He wants them to stop using the Machine Head trademark? That's a bit ridiculous.
    headbanger987
    I'm pretty sure that one won't go to far though, but still what a selfish shitty thing to say. More like Adam Duce bag
    caseharr33
    Sad issues do happen when partnerships with friends grow together and finally break out. This is when you have to know enough early on, to get things in writing and hire a lawyer to know the details. The record label will have an attorney to protect them, but unfortunately most bands assume that the Labels attorney will protect them. This is not the case. Every band that starts to make even a little money should have a legal agreement with each other and update it accordingly. Taking this step when it comes time for one members touring to stop a friendship can be maintained. Good luck with your case Adam.
    markyj666
    To be fair, if it was agreed 25% each and then the legal document was changed so Robb Flynn got more than an equal share, then he is right to sue.
    Dannym95
    Money is the bellend of the world.