American Idol “has catapulted countless applicants to fulfilling musical careers since its premiere in 2002.
However, a former competitor denounces mistreatment in the music industry. Daniel Seavy, one of the 10 season 14 finalists of “American Idol” and a member of the boy group “Why Don’t We” accused his management company of abuse along with his bandmates Corbyn Besson, Zach Herron, Jack Avery and Jonah Marais.
A statement shared on the group’s Instagram page read: “As many of you know, the sad truth about the mental, emotional and financial abuse we have suffered from our production company has recently been brought to light. While our initial instinct was to wait for the storm to pass (as we have been so conditioned to do), we have matured to the point where we now realize that suffering in silence is no longer an option, it is is not healthy for us either, or our fans.
The group says they were “prisoners”
In the Instagram post, the group says they were “young” and “confident” when the group first formed. All of the members were between 15 and 18 at the time.
“We had no idea that we would become prisoners in the ‘Why don’t we’ compound under the supervision of one of our managers,” the post read.
“Why don’t we” goes on to say that they were “essentially hostages in our own house”. According to the group, their food was restricted and they were not allowed to come and go of the “complex” as they pleased. An alarm would sound whenever doors or windows were opened, the statement said.
Who is the group’s production company?
The production company in question is Signature Entertainment. Signature Entertainment and another company called PDM III also own the music and masters for “Why Don’t We”.
iHeart Radio reports that David Loeffler and Randy Phillips of Signature Entertainment have the exclusive rights to “direct and control” both “Why Don’t We” and the solo careers of the band members. Loeffler and Phillips have now both filed lawsuits against each other.
When the members of “Why Don’t We” refused to sign a recording contract unless Phillips became their sole manager, Loeffler took legal action. Loeffler is also suing the group for “early termination of contract,” according to iHeart Radio.
Phillips then filed a lawsuit against Loeffler, saying he failed to honor a previous deal to let Phillips take over management of the group in 2020. Billboard reports that the lawsuit also accuses Loeffler of abusing members of “Why Not?” not us “and for exhibiting” nightmarish behavior “towards the group.
According to Billboard, the group asked the California Labor Commission to cancel their contract with Loeffler.
Other musicians support the group
Other musicians have expressed support for the decision of the members of “Why Don’t We” to speak out. Grammy Award-winning rapper Macklemore commented on a heart-shaped emoji on the group’s Instagram post.
Canadian musician Scott Hellman tweeted, “When I first met @whydontwemusic they were just lovely, and their manager David (Loeffler) was a huge hole **. A friend and I witnessed what seemed like a SUPER abusive conversation between him and The band I stand up for the rights of artists whenever possible, and I hope that whatever resolution of this conflict is in the best interests of these 5 talented guys.
The hashtags #FreeWDW and # JusticeforWhyDon’tWe have been around social media.
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