Last week, Donald Fagen filed a lawsuit against the estate of his late bandmate Walter Becker, who died earlier this year, over the rights to continue to use the name Steely Dan for performances. Fagen also filed a suit against Steely Dan’s management firm, alleging that the firm has been withholding records from him.Today, a representative of Walter Becker’s estate provides a statement regarding Donald Fagen’s lawsuit, expressing their disappointment. Read the full statement below.“We were disappointed to learn that Donald Fagen commenced a lawsuit against (the estate of) Walter Becker, his partner of 50 years, on the eve of Thanksgiving. We believe the agreement to which Mr. Fagen refers in his suit — drafted 45 years ago— was not in effect at the time of Walter’s death.Mr. Fagen’s lawsuit, riddled with half-truths and omissions, misleadingly fails to state that the day after Walter died, Mr. Fagen had his lawyer send a demand letter to Walter’s estate, thus beginning a legal campaign against Walter’s family immediately after his death. The misrepresentation that his widow, Ms. Cioffi initiated any litigious action is simply untrue. In our view, Mr. Fagen is unfairly trying to deprive Walter’s family of the fruits of their joint labors.Since Walter’s passing, we have endeavored to achieve a compromise with Mr. Fagen. We were close to a resolution with his longtime counsel who he suddenly fired. We then negotiated in good faith with replacement counsel who Mr. Fagen also fired. Mr. Fagen’s third and current lawyer did not even attempt to contact us prior to filing a lawsuit.While we regret Mr. Fagen’s latest actions, we will vigorously defend against his unwarranted and frivolous case.”As The Hollywood Reporter previously outlined of Fagen’s actions,“At the center of the lawsuit is a 1972 Buy/Sell Agreement signed by the original bandmembers when Steely Dan was incorporated. According to the complaint, which was filed Tuesday in L.A. County Superior Court, the contract provides that whenever a member of the group quits or dies Steely Dan purchases all of that members shares in the group.By the 2010s, Fagen and Becker were the only remaining shareholders and signatories to the Buy/Sell Agreement,” writes attorney Louis “Skip” Miller in the complaint. ‘Four days after Becker’s death, on September 7, 2017, the Becker Defendants sent Fagen a letter stating that ‘We wanted to put you on notice that the Buy/Sell Agreement dated as of October 31, 1972 is of no force or effect.’”The letter sent to Fagen by Becker’s estate also asked that Becker’s widow receive 50% ownership of and become an officer of Steely Dan. Fagen has claimed that the Becker estate currently has control of Steely Dan’s official website, with the estate of the late Steely Dan guitarist refusing to give him access or any control of the site. Fagen is seeking a million dollars in damages and hoping that the court will arrive at the decision that Fagen, following Becker’s passing, is the sole owner of the Steely Dan name.
Measure would protect business against lawsuits Measure would protect business against lawsuits Gary Blankenship Senior Editor Owners of commercial properties would get additional protections from suits for criminal acts committed on their properties if they meet certain security arrangements under a bill recently passed by the Florida House Judiciary Committee.HB 573, sponsored by Rep. Jeff Kottkamp, R-Cape Coral, was also praised by both business representatives and the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers as a way to reduce crime against citizens by encouraging businesses to improve safety in their parking lots, where most crimes occur. Those representatives, though, said more work needs to be done on the bill.“Essentially this is the first step in the process of setting guidelines for businesses and parking lots on the type of security they should put in place to prevent being sued for negligence [when a crime is committed],” said Kottkamp.As amended at the meeting, the bill provides that commercial property owners can present at a summary judgment hearing or at trial that some or all of several safety procedures enumerated in the bill had been installed or accomplished. Those include adequate lighting in parking lots and building entrances, fencing, training for employees, security cameras, use of security guards, and posting of signs.Rep. Kevin Ambler, R-Tampa, asked if it wouldn’t be better to enumerate the security precautions in jury instructions, but Kottkamp said he would prefer to codify the standards in law, and then perhaps address jury instructions later.Bill Hurley, representing the Florida Retail Federation, said the bill came from commercial property owners’ concerns when they are held liable for a crime committed by a third party at their businesses. While the property owners recognize they have a duty to protect the public, they also believe there are no standards or criteria on what constitutes reasonable protections.“We saw an opportunity to try and make premises safer,” said attorney Pete Dunbar, also representing the retail federation. He added the standards should be incorporated into statutes, not just jury instruction, and “we would also like there to be a reward for businesses that provide safe premises.”Paul Jess, representing the AFTA, said the academy had concerns about the bill as originally drafted, but likes much better the version approved by the committee.“We saw an opportunity for a real win-win [situation],” he said. “We want to fashion a bill that will be good public policy. We sense there is an opportunity to give a road map and incentive. . . to businesses to improve their security.”He said complying businesses will help reduce crime, which will benefit the public, and those businesses will be less likely to wind up in court, while the public will retain the right to sue businesses that do not provide safe premises, as defined in the law.The revised bill passed the committee unanimously.A companion bill, SB 1654, has been filed in the Senate, but at Bar News deadline, it had not been heard in any of the four committees to which it had been referred. April 15, 2004 Senior Editor Regular News
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Lucinda WilliamsThe quintessential singer/songwriter has an edgy voice that sounds like a soft snarl filtered through a rusty screen door of a ramshackle Delta farmhouse on a hot summer night. Her material rides the border between alt-country and hard rock, but always reverberates with raw emotion and a hint of something deeper going on. Her career has been quixotic over the years, but she’s finally getting the acclaim she deserves. “Passionate Kisses” anyone? With special guest Kenneth Brian Band. The Space. 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $40-$60. 8 p.m., June 19Jay BlackThe Long Island native known as The Voice and former frontman of Jay and the Americans will perform his hits, including “Only In America,” “Come A Little Bit Closer,” “Cara Mia,” “This Magic Moment,” and “Walkin’ In The Rain.” Harry Chapin Lakeside Theatre, Eisenhower Park, East Meadow. nassaucountyny.gov Free. 7:30 p.m., June 20Hot TunaHot Tuna teams up former Jefferson Airplane’s Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady, who for years have been putting their own spin on rock and roll—either electric or acoustic—that draws deep from the roots of country folk and down-home blues. Looking like a hipper version of Colonel Sanders in sunglasses, Leon Russell is the legendary piano man with an unmistakable tenor drawl, now honored in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, who achieved immortality for his “A Song For You,” with its evocative refrain, “Remember when we were together, we were alone and I was singing this song to you…” A night with these two great acts means a whole lotta pickin’ will be going on, whether on the keyboards or the guitar strings. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $39.50, $52. 8 p.m., June 20WWE LiveThis WWE VIP Experience event will feature some of the world’s greatest professional wrestlers, including John Cena, Bray Wyatt and the Wyatt Family, the Rhodes Brothers, and the recently dethroned Intercontinental Champion Big E. The audience will also witness the might of Rob Van Dam only one year after his return to WWE. Who will be left standing at the end of these epic showdowns? Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, 1255 Hempstead Tpke., Uniondale. nassaucoliseum.com $20-$111.85. 7:30 p.m., June 21Happy Together Tour 2014Back by popular demand on a tour running three-decades strong, concertgoers can relive the soundtrack of their youth as they are transported back in time via multimedia highlights referencing the era in which these hits were released. Those hits include “We’re An American Band,” “Some Kind of Wonderful,” “Devil With A Blue Dress,” “Good Golly Miss Molly,” “Joy To The World,” and, of course, “Happy Together.” Lineup includes The Turtles featuring Flo & Eddie, Chuck Negron formerly of Three Dog Night, Mark Farner formerly of Grand Funk Railroad, Gary Lewis and The Playboys and Mitch Ryder and The Detroit Wheels. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $39.50-$89.25. 8 p.m., June 21Fall Out Boy performing in Brazil. (Photo: Facebook)Fall Out Boy / ParamorePop-rock chart toppers Fall Out Boy and Paramore fill out one of this summer’s greatest tandems as they join forces for what they’re calling the “Monumentour.” Having ridden parallel roller-coasters through the courses of their careers, the announcement of the monumental co-headline has fans in frenzied states of excitement while questioning how this hasn’t happened earlier? Stay tuned for a forthcoming profile of both bands in the Press. With New Politics, The Maine. Nikon at Jones Beach Theater, 1000 Ocean Pkwy., Wantagh. jonesbeach.com. $56, $107.70. 7 p.m., June 21Scott StappSince another Creed reunion appears unlikely, catch the post-grunge rock band’s former frontman who turned his Grammy-winning hit, “With Arms Wide Open,” into a charity. He’s touring to promote his second solo album released last fall, Proof of Life. With guests Monks Of Mellonwah. The Emporium , 9 Railroad Ave., Patchogue. theemporiumny.com. $22 advance, $25 DOS. 8 p.m., June 21Matisyahu/Beer Fields FestivalThe Jewish reggae artist is touring to promote his fifth studio album, Akeda, released this month. With pop-punkers Ballyhoo! and local bands. The show is set against the backdrop of the daylong beer fest featuring more than 75 breweries, including a wide variety of local brewers. Pennysaver Amphitheater, Bald Hill, 55 South Bicycle Path, Selden. beerfieldsny.com $35 advance, $75 DOS, $125 VIP. 4 p.m., June 21Beards, Bards and BOOMThis mix of contemporary art forms will put all the senses to work. An outdoor sculpture garden, featuring more than 20 sculptures from local and emerging artists, which will be displayed through Aug. 18. Inside The Gathering House’s art gallery, patrons take in two-dimensional drawings and paintings, including new installations constructed by a tissue sculptor and a crochet artist’s yarn bomb. And Poet Steven T. Licardi will host spoken word performances by the best emerging poets on the scene. That’s in addition to musical performances throughout the evening from local singer-songwriters. The Walt Whitman Birthplace, 246 Old Walt Whitman Rd., Huntington Station. waltwhitman.org. Free. 7 p.m. June 21The Adventure Park at Long Island (Photo: Facebook)The Adventure Park at Long Island DebutsWhat’s billed as Long Island’s “First Aerial Forest Adventure Park” is slated to open its doors Saturday to thrill seekers eager to feel the rush of zipping through the trees on zip lines and “challenge bridges” between tree platforms. All of which are interconnected in a series of color-coded “treetop trails” ranging in difficulty from beginner to advanced on five wooded acres within the Henry Kaufman Campgrounds. Climbers wear safety harnesses, doubly secured to cables throughout their time in the trees to ensure they are “locked on” the climbing system. The Adventure Park at Long Island, 75 Colonial Springs Rd., Wheatley Heights, longislandadventurepark.org. $39-$49. 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Mon-Fri. 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Sat.-Sun. Season ends. Sept. 2Third Annual Long Island Kosher BBQ Championship and Kosher Food FestivalFire up the grills! Trophies will be presented to first, second and third-place winners of the following categories: Best Brisket, Best Ribs, Best Chicken, Best Beans, Most Original Team Name and Best Booth Decoration. A portion of the proceeds will be going to charities working to alleviate hunger. Temple Beth Torah, 243 Cantiague Rock Rd., Westbury. likosherbbq.org Free. 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m., June 22Everclear, Soul Asylum, Eve 6, SpageHogEverclear’s lead singer and songwriter Art Alexakis exercises patchwork skills of the flannel-and-denim era, constructing another nostalgia-ridden touring mini-festival lineup for ‘90s alt-rock lovers. For its third consecutive annual run, the Summerland tour bill proudly stars Soul Asylum, Eve 6, and SpaceHog. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $32-$71.50. 7:30 p.m., June 22Block BAfter the success of their new album “Jackpot,” this South Korean boy band is now a global sensation. These bad boys of K-pop are sure to impress with boastful rapping and powerful dance skills. Fans can expect to hear hits like “Very Good” and “Be the Light” on the latest stop of their first international tour under their new record label Seven Seasons. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $110-$245. 6:30 p.m., June 22Backstreet Boys / Avril LavigneBackstreet’s back, alright. Twenty-one years after their debut, history’s best-selling boy band is back at it. Touring in support of their new record, “In a World Like This,” set to be released next month. Sharing a stage with everyone’s favorite Canadian punk princess, Avril Lavigne. Nikon at Jones Beach Theater, 1000 Ocean Pkwy., Wantagh. jonesbeach.com. $29.50-$250. 7:30 p.m., June 22Ben FoldsHe put the Ben Folds in the platinum-selling Ben Folds Five and he’s back to rock the suburbs. Following a successful reunion/live album release with the band in 2013, Folds tackles his latest live performances with a piano concerto he’s composed as part of a global symphonic tour. The Space. 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $40-$64.15. 7 p.m., June 2325th Anniversary of Tim Burton’s BatmanThis marks a quarter century since what became known as “The Summer of Batman,” long before Christian Bale played The Dark Knight. Speakers include comics’ historian Danny Fingeroth in conversation with one of comics’ most acclaimed writers, Dennis O’Neil. Includes a reception with comics and merchandise available for sale by Escape Pod Comics and 4th World Comics and Toys. Cinema Arts Centre, 423 Park Ave., Huntington. CinemaArtsCentre.org. $10 members, $15 public. 7:30 p.m., June 23Lionel Richie / CeeLo GreenR&B and soul classics and current hits will be performed back-to-back in the All The Hits All Night Long tour. Lionel Richie, one of the best-selling artists of all time, will bring it back to the old school with too many chart-toppers to list here. With the more famous half of Gnarls Barkley, who’s starring in a new reality show, “CeeLo Green’s The Good Life.” Nikon at Jones Beach Theater, 1000 Ocean Pkwy., Wantagh. jonesbeach.com. $20-$171.50. 7:30 p.m., June 25—Compiled by Arielle Martinez, Elora Weil, Nikki Donato, Spencer Rumsey and Timothy Bolger.