Autograph members Simon Daniels & Marc Wieland explain why they are suing Randy Rand’s widow
It appears that Autograph members Simon Daniels (lead vocals, guitar) and Marc Wieland (drums) have had enough of their former bandmate Steve Lynch‘s various publicly available Facebook posts where the latter seemingly tries to paint them as “villains.” Earlier today, Lynch disclosed that Daniels and Wieland had commenced a claim (a crossclaim within an action) against deceased Autograph bassist Randy Rand‘s widow Regina Rand.
Daniels and Wieland have now provided a statement to Sleaze Roxx writer / photographer Christopher Carroll to explain what has been taking place and why they have elected to sue Randy Rand‘s widow.
Statement from Simon Daniels and Marc Wieland of Autograph:
“We’ve seen the recent postings by Steve Lynch about the dispute over the Autograph name. We have to respond to let our fans know what is going on. As we all know, our friend and original Autograph bassist Randy Rand passed away last year while we were working on our last album, “Beyond.” Randy was a brother. We lost a band member and a friend. Much of that is personal, and we have dealt with it personally. But the album is partially business, and he wanted this album out. His widow Regina assured us many times that he did too, and that it should come out.
Steve Lynch left the band three years ago and gave us his blessing. He knew about “Beyond.” So we were completely surprised when — after we brought a very limited lawsuit to figure out if (after nine years of being full band members) we use the name for live performances — we were personally sued by Lynch for putting out Beyond. He has sued us, our record label and the company that we jointly owned with Randy for “use of the AUTOGRAPH Mark and the Logos to promote recordings, performances and merchandise.”
This was a complete shock, and now the law requires us to join everyone who could be responsible for the behavior Lynch complains of. Sadly, that includes Randy’s widow because she told us to put out the record. She signed papers on behalf of Autograph Band1, LLC, which was Randy’s company and a company that Lynch is now suing. We, as individuals in this group and part of this company, are not going to bear the risk for putting out a record that everyone agreed should come out.
When we were first threatened by Lynch in June, Randy’s widow had our back. She wrote things like “Randy want[ed] this album out more than anything – I promise to do whatever you need me to do to help with this!!!!” “Yea well the album better come out because Randy is on it – and they can’t stop you from [playing] now!” On another text, she wrote “Oh god help – autograph is not done!!!! No!!!! Me and you can come up with a plan to take care of Steve.”
But after the album came out, she started writing to promoters and telling them not to let us play this music. We’ve been full members of this band for nine years. We were partners in two companies with Randy, they recorded at our studio, they used our songs. We believe we have a right to play that music.
Maybe the courts will decide differently, but that is why we went to court – ONLY to figure out if we could play Autograph music live. In response to this narrow problem, Lynch pulled out a bazooka and sued our record company, our booking agent and our company with Randy for putting out the last Autograph record. So ya, we are going to protect ourselves, and we are required to bring in everyone needed to settle this. One of those people is Randy’s widow, who encouraged us to come out with the record, and who signed papers and ok’d money from the company to pay for the record AND the video that we made to honor Randy. We aren’t happy about it. We’ve named her in the last complaint, but we haven’t served her with the case, gotten a subpoena for her or contacted her at all.
However, we are NOT going to be painted as villains by Lynch, who left the band three years ago and gave his blessing to carry on.”
Autograph‘s “This Ain’t The Place I Wanna Be” video (from Beyond album):