The lawsuit launched by former Ramones drummer "Richie Ramone" Reinhardt over his digital rights to the part of the group’s musical legacy he contributed to has been tossed out by a federal judge.
Reinhardt claims he has been cheated out of nearly $1 million in royalties when the band’s music went digital, but U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin said in a ruling Friday that a contract he signed when he performed with the Ramones between 1983 and 1987 clearly covered digital uses of his songs.
Reinhardt filed the suit last year claiming he was owed for the six songs ("Smash You," "Somebody Put Something in My Drink," "Human Kind," "I’m Not Jesus," "I Know Better Now," "(You) Can’t Say Something Nice") he wrote for the band that have since been sold over the Internet, but Scheindlin noted that the contract definition of phonograph records contained the words "now or hereafter known" when referring to forms of reproduction, making it clear that future technologies were considered and covered by the agreement.
Often called the creators of punk rock, The Ramones formed in New York in 1974 and performed for 22 years, with various members, before their last show in 1996. Three of the group’s founding members, Johnny, Joey and Dee Dee, have died over the last decade.
Kaaltv.com: Drummer’s lawsuit for royalties is dismissed