Nelly’s Camp Sues Promoter

A Branson, Mo., promoter who’s accused Nelly’s tour manager of threats of bodily harm and extortion stemming from an August 2010 concert is being sued for breach of contract.

Flush Touring Co., which handles Nelly’s road trips, filed a lawsuit Jan. 31 in Stone County Circuit Court against Paul Dunn claiming the promoter owes the rapper $37,500 for an Aug. 21 show at the Mansion Theatre, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The dispute stems from Dunn’s original plan to host Branson’s first hip-hop concert at the Grand Palace’s parking lot, which was scheduled to reopen after a lengthy renovation. But city officials denied the permit request based on parking, crowd control and noise concerns, so Dunn moved the show to the nearby Mansion Theatre.

Both sides reportedly agree the original, oral agreement was for Nelly to be paid $75,000 but they have different versions of what happened next.

Dunn claims that fee was renegotiated to $40,500 when the venue change was made and that he made that payment to Nelly’s associates before the show. But Dunn claims things got ugly later on.

“Mr. Cole started asking me for $35,000 more before the concert was even finished,” Dunn told the Post-Dispatch, adding that Cole and associates followed him to a hotel and a restaurant, allegedly blocked his car with their car and went “gangster” on him.

“He kept telling me how I was going to get my (expletive) kicked,” he told the paper. “I wrote him a check just to get those guys out of here.”

Dunn said he put a stop-payment on the check Aug. 23 and filed a report with Branson Police about the alleged shakedown, the paper said.

Meanwhile, Mike Chaffin, Nelly’s business manager, told the Post-Dispatch Dunn’s timing is suspect.

“I find it funny that Mr. Dunn is now talking to the press about this once he knew a lawsuit was going to be filed,” Chaffin told the paper. “What I know is his check bounced like a basketball.”

And as for Dunn’s timing, KSPR-TV reported Jan. 26 that the promoter was circulating a four-page letter to local businesses and news outlets that accuses government officials, some former business partners and Nelly’s employees of conspiring against him and that several more letters to come will “shock the public.”