Black Sues Over Royalties

Clint Black has filed suit against former manager Charles Sussman, alleging negligence in handling the country star’s finances.

The suit, filed Nov. 7 in Davidson County Chancery Court, accuses Sussman and his Nashville firm, Gudvi, Sussman & Oppenheim, of convincing Black to assign more than $500,000 in royalties to Equity Records, according to the Nashville Post.

Black and Sussman both reportedly have minority ownership of the independent label.

Black said he got nothing in return for the arrangement but instead was “providing Equity an interest-free, unsecured loan,” according to the Post. He also said that Sussman had him sign more than $1 million of personal guaranties for Equity.

It might have seemed like a reasonable deal had Little Big Town not left the label’s roster for Columbia Records in April. Black alleges he was never given details about the group’s contract, but was told by Sussman they had a long-term deal.

Sussman was unavailable for comment at press time.

The suit marks the second time Black has sued a former manager over royalties. He spent seven months in litigation in 1992 before reaching a settlement with Bill Ham, who managed ZZ Top for more than 30 years.

This time around, he is seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.

Black is currently managed by John Baruck.