Statement Says Former Singer Can’t Bill Himself as Queensrÿche Come Sept. 1
Queensrÿche has posted a statement on its website, QueensrycheOfficial.com, that sheds more light on the settlement agreement it entered with former singer Geoff Tate. It also took the time to announce that a new album is coming in early summer 2015.
Tate and the band announced April 28 that a settlement had been reached after a nearly two-year legal battle where Tate sued for the Queensrÿche name after being fired in 2012. Former bandmates Michael Wilton, Scott Rockenfield and Eddie Jackson responded with a countersuit. The April statement revealed that Wilton, Rockenfield and Jackson would continue as Queensrÿche, while Tate now has the sole right to perform the albums "Operation: Mindcrime" and "Operation: Mindcrime II" in their entirety live.
Today's statement from Queensrÿche reads, in part:
“Century Media [the band’s label] is pleased to announce that Eddie Jackson, Scott Rockenfield and Michael Wilton have successfully agreed to purchase Geoff Tate’s portion of the Queensrÿche name. The band will buy out their former lead singer’s share of the Queensrÿche corporation while allowing him the ability to be the only one to perform ‘Operation: Mindcrime’ and ‘Operation: Mindcrime’ II in their entirety. He will no longer have use of the triryche logo or any other album images aside from the ‘Mindcrime’ releases. He can only refer to himself as the ‘original lead singer of Queensrÿche’ or ‘formerly of Queensrÿche’ for a period of two years and that text must be at least 50 percent smaller than his name in all materials. After this two-year period passes, he can only refer to himself as Geoff Tate with no mention of Queensrÿche at all. Geoff Tate will be able to finish any confirmed dates billed for his Queensrÿche lineup scheduled to terminate on Aug. 31, 2014. As of Sept. 1, there will be only one Queensrÿche entity and that will consist of Eddie Jackson, Todd LaTorre, Parker Lundgren, Scott Rockenfield and Michael Wilton. This lineup will continue to perform selections from their entire musical catalog including songs from ‘Operation: Mindcrime.’ The band will be able to use all triryche logos and previous album artwork for any purposes as needed by the corporation.”
Fans had questioned how long Tate could still use Queensrÿche imagery and other related entities since Tate had formed his own version of the band in September 2012 and continued using the band’s social media outlets despite being fired, as well as touring under the name and releasing an album, “Frequency Unknown,” in April 2013. In response, Queensrÿche created new Facebook, Twitter and official websites, and released a self-titled album in June 2012.
Shortly after Tate did his first interview once the settlement was announced (with Billboard, click here), he sent out a press statement to publicize Queensrÿche Starring Geoff Tate — The Farewell Tour, with dates running from July until the end of August. It noted that Tate would continue as “the voice of Queensrÿche” once the tour is complete. Whether he will attempt to do so in the face of today’s Queensrÿche statement remains to be seen.