Following the recent court resolution of a legal dispute, teen pop group Dream Street will resurface with new members and a new record deal, according to Louis Baldonieri, a partner in the group’s New York-based management/production firm Dream Street Entertainment (DSE).
The New York State Supreme Court rejected a legal claim that was seeking to overturn a contract between members of Dream Street and DSE. In a decision made Aug. 7 by Justice Diane Lebedeff, the court ruled that DSE holds the rights to the Dream Street music group name and concept. The court also decided that former group members were not allowed to perform under the Dream Street name or any close variation of the moniker.
“One of the biggest misconceptions about this case is that this was a lawsuit, but there was never a lawsuit,” Baldonieri tells Billboard.com. “The claim made was for the court to decide if our contract could be revoked, and the court decided in our favor.” DSE had been in a legal dispute with the parents of Dream Street’s underage teenage members Matthew Ballinger, Frank Galasso, Jesse McCartney, Gregory Raposo, and Christopher Trousdale. Among the charges brought by the parents were that DSE owed the members back pay and that DSE exposed the Dream Street members to alcohol and pornography.
Ballinger, Galasso, McCartney, and Raposo have since left the group, while Trousdale remains. Baldonieri says that DSE is planning to “recast new members in Dream Street. Because of all the legal hassles in dealing with minors, I’m wondering if we should just have new members that are 18 and over.” The music executive says that although DSE is launching Trousdale as a solo act, “Chris has the option to still be an active part of Dream Street if he wants to be.”
Dream Street’s self-titled debut album on Edel Entertainment hit No. 1 last year on Billboard’s Top Independent Albums chart. The album has sold 730,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. Edel Entertainment (the U.S. division of German company Edel Music) went out of business earlier this year, but DSE’s Baldonieri says, “Edel allowed us to purchase the Dream Street masters, so now we own the group’s master recordings.”
A Dream Street movie, “The Biggest Fan,” starring Trousdale, is expected to hit theaters later this year, says Baldonieri. He adds that DSE is in discussions with Columbia to sign Dream Street and release “The Biggest Fan” soundtrack. Trousdale is featured on Columbia pop act Play’s current single “I’m Gonna Make You Love Me.”
“‘The Biggest Fan’ soundtrack will have four or five new Dream Street songs which were recorded before the breakup [of the original lineup],” Baldonieri reveals. A new Dream Street album is expected to be out next year.