Chance The Rapper Countersues Former Manager, Accusing Him Of “Self-Dealing And Incompetence”
Late last year, Chance The Rapper’s former manager Pat Corcoran, aka Pat The Manager, sued Chance for breach of contract. Now Chance is suing him back.
Chance, born Chancelor Bennett, fired Corcoran last April and replaced him with his own father and brother, Ken and Taylor Bennett. Corcoran’s lawsuit made several claims against Chance: that he owed Corcoran “over $2.5 million of unreimbursed expenses supporting and promoting Bennett’s career,” that he had violated an oral agreement to pay Corcoran 15% of his profits, and that an unfocused approach to his 2019 album The Big Day — combined with a self-imposed release deadline Chance announced to the public without consulting Corcoran — resulted in a lackluster product that badly damaged his career. One juicy excerpt from Corcoran’s suit:
Corcoran opposed announcing the release of any album before the recording or writing process even began, let alone was substantially completed. Compounding the issue, Bennett’s recording efforts were compromised by unproductive and undisciplined studio sessions. Procrastinations and lackadaisical effort, perpetuated by various hangers-on uninterested in the hard work of writing and recording, resulted in a freestyle-driven product of sub-par quality, a complete deviation from the meticulous writing process that brought Bennett fame for his wordplay and wit.
Last week Chance filed his own lawsuit against Corcoran, the Chicago Tribune reports. The lawsuit — which you can read here in full — alleges that Corcoran exploited his position as Chance’s manager for profit. “Mr. Corcoran repeatedly breached his fiduciary responsibilities to Mr. Bennett by trading on Mr. Bennett’s good name for his own benefit, diverting business opportunities to his separate companies, and demanding and accepting kickbacks as the ‘price’ of doing business with the [sic] Mr. Bennett.” The suit also describes Corcoran as “a child of privilege” and “a hanger-on at the fringes of the rap music scene in Chicago” with no experience in music management, who, “through a pure stroke of luck,” met Chance in 2012 and was entrusted with the opportunity of managing his career despite no prior experience in the field.
Corcoran’s alleged corruption includes leveraging Live Nation’s interest in promoting a Chance tour to sell the company Corcoran’s No Fine Print wine at concerts. According to Chance’s suit, when the people renovating Chicago’s Ramova Theater called to offer Chance equity in the business, Corcoran demanded a cut of the deal as well or else Chance would not participate. Corcoran also allegedly botched the vinyl release of The Big Day, thereby costing Chance more than $1 million in merch profits, and “effectively sabotaged” an offer for Chance to become the celebrity face of UnitedMasters, a music distributor aimed at providing support and services for independent artists.
The parties have each shared statements to the Tribune. Here is Chance’s camp:
Mr. Corcoran has been paid in full under his management services contract with Mr. Bennett. Yet he chose to file a groundless and insulting lawsuit that ignores his own improper self-dealing and incompetence. Mr. Bennett has moved to dismiss the majority of that meritless lawsuit, and filed his own lawsuit to remedy the harm that Mr. Corcoran caused through his breaches of duty. Mr. Bennett trusts the legal system to reveal the truth of the parties’ relationship in due course.
And here’s a response from Corcoran’s camp:
Rather than confront the substance of Pat The Manager’s claims, the defendants have elected to attack Mr. Corcoran’s character and rewrite history. The aspersions cast by the Chance camp are offensive and do not reflect the reality of the relationship that Mr. Corcoran and Mr. Bennett developed over many years of collaboration. The results of the pair’s fruitful teamwork — and the contrasting results when Mr. Corcoran was sidelined — are evident to the public. Mr. Corcoran is proud of the work he did on Mr. Bennett’s behalf, and is proud of the work he continues to perform for other talented artists. Mr. Corcoran looks forward to presenting his claims and airing out the defendants’ baseless accusations in court.
Remember when Chance’s career was a feel-good story?