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Elvis Presley Enterprises sues Chrysalis Music Group over publishing payments

January 12, 2011 |  3:02 pm

Elvis Presley Enterprises is suing Chrysalis Music Group to the tune of $5 million, charging that Chrysalis failed to perform its duties administering publishing of songs owned by EPE.

In a suit filed last week in New York Supreme Court, EPE and the heirs of publishers Julian and Jean Aberbach charge Chrysalis with underpaying royalties on songs to which EPE and the Aberbachs hold the copyrights, and other royalty collection and payment issues. Presley and his manager, Col. Tom Parker, entered into a music publishing deal with the Aberbachs in 1955, at the outset of the singer's career.

Chrysalis Music Group had been contracted by EPE and the Aberbachs to protect their publishing rights and collect royalties from 2002 to 2006, according to the suit, which also alleges that Chrysalis failed to make payments to EPE and the Aberbachs even after its own audits showed that additional money was due them.

The suit asks for a minimum of $5 million in damages.

“The lawsuit came as a surprise to us, as we have been working with the Presley estate on resolving an ongoing audit," a Chrysalis spokesman said in a statement issued Wednesday. "Without prejudice, it is our intention to keep working towards a satisfactory solution for all parties concerned.”

-- Randy Lewis