Bennett Sues Tweedy


This is a little sad if I’m honest. Having been a big Wilco fan for a very long time, dating back to when Jay Bennett was main player in Wilco, it’s very sad to hear the news that he has decided to sue Jeff Tweedy, claiming Tweedy owes him money from the band’s 2002 documentary ‘I Am Trying To Break Your Heart’ and for royalties on songs written during Bennett’s seven years with the group. As well as arguing that he deserves money for songwriting royalties, Bennett is also suing on the basis that Tweedy never obtained the necessary release for the use of Bennett’s performance in ‘I Am Trying To Break Your Heart’. The first part, if he hasn’t been paid, is fair enough but I am not sure how you can sue somebody who did not make the film in the first place over this issue. Surely Bennett’s beef on this front must lie with the filmmaker’s themselves rather than Tweedy? I also find it rather odd that Bennet is only suing for $50,000. Surely his role in all the Wilco album’s he has appeared on would amount to more than this paltry figure? Interestingly it seems that Bennett currently requires hip surgery, which he cannot afford and this legal action has arisen at exactly the time of his need for such cash. Regardless, I find the whole mess rather sad. Given how important Jay Bennet was in the making of Yankee Hotel Foxtrot and the part he played in Wilco up to the recording of this album, I think it’s sad that 8 years after his exit from the group he has decided to take this action. I find it hard to imagine as well. Putting such a scenario into the context of the Kays I’d like to think that people would be paid what they are due always. I cannot imagine spending most of your waking days for 7 years recording and touring with somebody and then turning around and suing them. Creative relationships end. Relationships end. It’s the bad blood which always makes such things so sad. I don’t know who is at fault here, but I hope it is resolved without the need for court action.