Classic Rock Magazine has issued that the Former STEELY DAN vocalist David Palmer has launched a lawsuit against mainmen Donald Fagen and Walter Becker, seeking unpaid royalties for his work on the band’s debut album, Can’t Buy A Thrill.
Palmer sang lead vocals on the tracks Dirty Work and Brooklyn (Owes The Charmer Under Me) for the 1972 album, and backing vocals on a number of other songs. He also fronted the band when they toured in support of the album.
After Fagen took over lead vocals, Palmer remained with the band to record backing tracks on 1973′s Countdown To Ecstasy album before moving on.
Palmer, who now works as a photographer, realised he’d been underpaid when rights organisation AFTRA asked him to confirm whether he was entitled to royalties for his work. The singer confirmed he had a contract agreeing to pay him one-sixth of the income from the tracks he led, and that digital royalties had remained unpaid.
Steely Dan Inc wrote him a cheque for $8,000 to cover the period June 2013 to March 2014, but he believes he’s owed more, and on Friday he filed legal papers in Los Angeles.
It’s thought the legal wrangles are the reason why Steely Dan refused to allow Dirty Work to appear on the soundtrack album for the move American Hustle, in which it has high-profile use.