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The Mötley Crue guitarist sued the group, claiming he was fired due to illness

Guitarist Mick Mars has filed a lawsuit against Motley Crue, alleging that the ’80s hair metal band is trying to force him out of the group and reduce his ownership stake due to a debilitating illness.

Mars, 71, says in his claim that he has suffered for decades from a “terrible” disease, a chronic form of arthritis that has effectively fused his spine, left him three inches shorter than when he was in high school and unable to turn his head. in any direction

Because of the disease, known as ankylosing spondylitis, Mars told the band last year that he would not be able to tour. The guitarist “simply physically could no longer handle the rigors of the road,” according to the lawsuit filed by Mars last week. He said he could perform with them “in a residential situation” and record with the band, the lawsuit said.

In response, the lawsuit claims, Motley Crue announced that Mars was “retiring” from the band and would be replaced by another guitarist — and also tried to strip him of his ownership of the business. Mars claimed he had no intention of retiring from the group and accused co-founder Nicky Sixx of gaslighting Mars, alleging the guitarist had “some sort of cognitive dysfunction.”

Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe concert in Monterey

Singer Vince Neil and guitarist Nicky Sixx of Motley Crue perform during a concert with Def Leppard at Estadio Banorte on February 21, 2023 in Monterrey, Mexico.

Media and Media/Getty Images

The suit, filed Thursday in Los Angeles County Superior Court, seeks to provide Mars with access to the band’s corporate documents, such as tax returns and contracts. So far, Motley Crue has refused to provide documents to Mars, the suit claims. It is also seeking reimbursement for Mars’ legal expenses.

“Prior to our filing, the band had already begun an arbitration that essentially tried to force Mick out of the band and divest him of his ownership interest in Motley Crue Inc., the band’s main corporate entity,” Ed McPherson, Mars attorney, told CBS MoneyWatch. said

True no band said

An attorney for Mötley Crüe said the group previously provided Mars with the documents it is seeking.

“If this case was really about the documents, Meek and his lawyer wouldn’t be repeating 41 years of band history and smearing the band’s performance on tour,” the band’s attorney Sasha Freed told CBS MoneyWatch in an email.

“This lawsuit is nothing more than a malicious attempt to leverage the band and Mick’s former bandmates – orchestrated by Mick’s lawyer,” Freed said.

On Twitter, Sixx wrote that the case represented “a sad day for us.” “(W)e didn’t deserve it considering how many years we’ve been helping him,” added the guitarist.

Sad day for us and considering how many years we’ve been helping him we don’t deserve it- we still wish him the best and hope he finds his lawyers and managers who aren’t harming him. We love you Mick -https://t.co/dhpu7ejxSi

— 📷 (@NikkiSixx) April 7, 2023

Dr. Philbad?

The case highlights business deals that can provide rock stars with a generous stream of revenue through touring, merchandise sales and other ventures. Motley Crue’s tour with Def Leppard last year grossed more than $170 million, according to Billboard.

In response to Mars’ decision to pull out of the tour, Crews called an emergency shareholders’ meeting of the band’s main corporate entity to “kick Mars out of the band, to fire him as a director of the corporation, to fire him as an officer of the corporation, and to fire him as an officer of the corporation.” to expropriate the shares,” the lawsuit claims.

It alleges, “When he didn’t leave quietly, they planned to fire him from six additional band corporations and LLCs.”

According to the suit, Mötley Crüe sought to reduce Mars’ share of the group’s touring and merchandise sales from 25% to 5% for the tour, and then to 0%. The band tried to force Mars to sell his shares in Motley Crue Inc. for “basically no value,” the suit claims.

Stadium Tour: Motley Crue and Venom

Nicky Sixx and Mick Mars of Motley Crue perform on stage during the Stadium Tour at Nationals Park on June 22, 2022 in Washington, DC.

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Live Nation

The legal dispute offers insight into the inner workings of the rock band, whose members are known for their addictions, run-ins with the law and other problems. Mars alleged that Sixx had insulted his playing, telling him it was subpar, and fans were complaining that Sixx had even allegedly not played his bass on tour, relying instead on recordings.

Mangal admits that he sometimes plays the wrong chords, but blames it on an in-ear monitor malfunction.

“The truth is that Mangal is rarely mocked or criticized online. He is a quiet member of the group, who shows up to play and puts his heart and soul into every performance,” the lawsuit claims. “In contrast, other band members are often criticized online, especially (singer Vince) Neil, who is regularly ripped for not remembering the lyrics, among other things.”

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