The legal battle between Journey’s Neal Schon and Jonathan Cain has added a new chapter, with Cain now following through with a countersuit against Schon, alleging that the guitarist ran up over a $1 million bill on the band’s shared American Express Card and is breaching his fiduciary duty to the band’s corporate entity.
News of the divide between Schon and Cain came to light in November when Schon sued Cain over the band’s finances, alleging that he had been denied access to the band’s financial records and also alleging that Cain had set up the band credit card without telling him with “millions of Journey funds” flowing through it.
Cain soon countered with a statement, revealing that he felt that Schon’s own “reckless spending” was behind the legal kerfuffle. “This is a matter that should have been resolved privately, but I am forced to publicly respond now to Neal’s malicious lies and personal attacks on my family and I in an effort to garner public support for his ill-conceived lawsuit — a lawsuit that has absolutely no merit,” said Cain at the time, adding, “Neal has always had access to the credit card statements; what he lacks — and what he is really seeking — is the ability to increase his spending limits.”
Now, per Billboard, Cain has countered Schon’s suit with one of his own against the guitarist. In the Jan. 13 filing, he alleged that Schon racked up over $1 million in charges on the band’s credit card, including spending over $400,000 in a single month last year. Cain filed his suit in California state court last week.
“Schon’s use of the [shared] AMEX card for personal expenses created serious liquidity problems for the band, as the AMEX balance had to be paid every month, and there were insufficient revenues to pay for other expenses as Schon saddled Journey with over $1 million of his personal expenses,” Cain’s lawyers wrote in the complaint.
According to the suit, Cain says that Schon demanded suites at a Hawaiian hotel at the end of a recent tour that cost over $5,000 per night, then stayed a week longer than necessary. He also cited a bill last March that exceeded $400,000 that came from charges at Bergdorf Goodman department store in New York City as well as other retailers.
“Schon’s charges placed considerable pressure on Journey and its ability to cover normal tour expenses,” his lawyers wrote. “Schon was spending Journey’s money, and Cain is the one who was and is ultimately liable for the AMEX Account and Schon’s charges on the AMEX Card.”
Cain is accusing Schon of breaching his fiduciary duty to the band’s shared corporate entity.
In a statement to Billboard, Schon’s attorney Skip Miller called allegations “ridiculous” and “as phony as a three dollar bill.” He said the countersuit was merely “sour grapes” after a recent incident in which Schon demanded that Cain stop playing events for former President Donald Trump. “We want Cain to just focus on Journey and its fans,” Miller said.
Since the initial lawsuit, Schon has made several more allegations concerning Cain and his family in regard to the financial dispute. Among the most recent was that Cain’s wife, Paula White-Cain, had unlawfully accessed the band’s financial account without Schon’s consent.
Schon had also filed a cease-and-desist against Cain after the musician joined in a sing-along of “Don’t Stop Believin'” with several right-wing politicians at a party at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate.
Despite the legal drama behind the scenes, Journey will reportedly hit the road with Schon and Cain for their 50th anniversary tour. Cain recently shared that he would be “hitting the road with Journey.” This came as Schon was championing a return of the band’s original keyboardist, Gregg Rolie, for the 50th anniversary tour. But it was recently revealed that Rolie’s return was being met with resistance from two members of the band.
12 Infamous Rock + Metal Legal Battles
Queue “Winners and Losers” by Social Distortion.