Kanye West Hawthorne Heights

Hawthorne Heights have some advice for Kanye’s plan to sue his label

West wants to be released from his contract with Universal and Sony.

September 16, 2020
  • Share

Earlier this week, Kanye West took to Twitter to announce that he wants to be released from his contract with Universal and Sony.

Following his tweet, he revealed his plans to possibly sue the labels after receiving no response from them. Since then, he has shared every single page of his current contract online. Now, Hawthorne Heights are reminding West about why suing his record label “doesn’t work.”

Read more: Hear Rise Against’s first new song in three years “Broken Dreams, Inc.”

For those that need a quick refresh, Hawthorne Heights sued their label Victory Records in 2006 for breach of contract. In a statement, the band revealed why they decided to take legal action against Victory Records.

“Due to recent events we have decided to leave Victory Records,” they said. “Our departure is anything but amicable. We have decided to leave Victory, in part due to the actions of the man who sits at the head of the label, Tony Brummel. Tony Brummel is a man that cares more about his ego and bank account than the bands themselves.”

Hawthorne Heights then go on to say that their situation at the label was similar to what other artists experienced at that time.

“We’ve accomplished more in three years than most bands do in a lifetime and for that we are extremely grateful and consider ourselves very fortunate,” the band said. “Our situation with Tony Brummel is indicative of issues that all bands on Victory Records encounter on some level or another. We have decided to remove ourselves from the negative situation so that we can continue to do what we love best and focus on writing and playing music to people that care about what we have created.”

Read more: There’s only one way to get McDonald’s Travis Scott meal amid shortage

The lawsuit claimed that Victory Records had earned over $10 million in revenue from Hawthorne Heights CDs, merch and more. However, the label claimed the band still owed them $1 million.

Hawthorne Heights also stated that the abuse of power within the label is what kept them from filing the lawsuit for three years. Taking Back Sunday, Atreyu and Thursday are among the other artists named in the lawsuit.

In the end, however, Victory Records counter-sued and the lawsuit was eventually settled in 2008. The label went on to release Hawthorne Heights’ third album Fragile Future later that year.

Now, Hawthorne Heights are reminding West about why suing his record label “doesn’t work.” After initially receiving no response about his request to be released from his contract, West hinted that he may sue Universal and Sony.

Read more: You may be waiting even longer for Marvel Phase 4 to begin

Following these tweets, Hawthorne Heights brought up their lawsuit against Victory Records and reminded the rapper about why the lawsuit probably won’t amount to anything.

“Dear @kanyewest Please don’t sue your record label. Trust us. It doesn’t work.”

Read more: Here’s why Metallica’s whiskey still exists after James Hetfield’s rehab stay

Since then, West has been very active on social media. He revealed that he is in talks with people at Sony and Universal. According to him, there are plans in motion to change the way label contracts are written. The goal is to make them more transparent so future artists aren’t misled about what rights they are signing away.

Read more: Apple’s new iPad Air is almost perfect, but there’s one major design flaw

For West especially, he wants to own all of the masters to his music and thinks all artists should be able to, too. Most artists in the industry sign away their master rights when they sign contracts.

Taylor Swift made headlines after she signed a new contract with Universal which allows her to keep all of her music masters, starting with her album Lover. Swift is currently in dispute with her old label Big Machine Records about obtaining the master rights to her previously released albums.

Read more: It might be a while before Billie Eilish releases her next album

West even shared every single, yes every SINGLE PAGE, of his current record label contract.

Things then kind of took a bizarre turn when West shared a video of him peeing on one of his Grammys.

Most recently, he shed further light on what many record label contracts include.

What are your thoughts on Kanye West’s plans to get out of his record contract? Let us know in the comments below.

Written by Rachael Dowd