Here’s something sad: The two longest-tenured, most visible members of Public Enemy, one of the greatest groups in rap history, are locked in a legal battle with one another. At their peak, Public Enemy drew much of their power from the yin-and-yang contrast of Chuck D’s booming authority and Flavor Flav’s chaotic, larger-than-life charisma. But now TMZ reports that Flav is suing Chuck, claiming he hasn’t been paid royalties in years.
According to documents that TMZ received, Flav claims that he and Chuck have a longstanding profit-sharing agreement, but Flav says that he hasn’t received a royalty check in several years, while Chuck has been getting paid. Flav also says that his voice and image were used without consent on Nothing Is Quick In The Desert, the free-download album that Public Enemy released earlier this summer. Flav claims that he requested $75,000 to participate in the album but was only paid $7,500.
Flav is also suing various Public Enemy managers and producers. One of those producers is Gary G-Wiz, who allegedly made a deal, without Flav’s knowledge or consent, to make Public Enemy action figures. Flav says he hasn’t been paid for those, either.