A scathing war of words has broken out overnight between former Soundwave chief AJ Maddah and Ministry frontman Al Jourgensen, who has accused the fallen promoter of being a “lying scumbag” who “ripped off damn near every band in the festival lineup”. Now Maddah has responded, levelling more accusations at the industrial metal icon.
Posting on a Patreon crowdfunding page he set up overnight, Jourgensen says he is trying to recoup $200,000 he claims to be owed by Maddah for Soundwave 2015, for costs of promotion, management, travel agents and equipment rental fees.
“In my 35 years of touring, I’ve been fortunate enough to have never encountered such a lying scumbag… not only did he blatantly rip us off but ripped off damn near every band in the festival lineup,” says Jourgensen.
“He worked soundwave fest like a bernie madoff ponzi scheme… (he would pay last years bands off of the next year’s ticket sales… and apparently this has been going on for years with this guy…) he has been living the “high life” of a jet setting playboy on the hard work of thousands of musicians and crew over the years, but this year, it all came crashing down.”
“I personally paid my band and crew out of my pocket $35,250 to make these shows happen,” Jourgensen claims. “I guess I can take solace in knowing this fuckhead, AJ, will probably got to jail.”
— Ministry (@WeAreMinistry) December 20, 2015
Not one to let accusations levelled at him go unanswered, Maddah has responded to Jourgensen’s claims, saying that he had “no intention of ever ripping you off or doing you any harm”, while also hitting back, accusing Jourgensen of leaving him broke from a previous cancelled Ministry tour.
In a lengthy Twitter tirade, Maddah accused Jourgensen of having to cancel Ministry’s 2006 Australian Rio Grande Blood tour, after his band quit because they weren’t paid. “I know you do not give a [shit] and have never given a shit about anything or anyone besides feeding your various habit,” wrote a scathing Maddah. “But I worked nights and weekend to pay off the debts from that cancelled tour and still I kept faith in you as a fan.
“I have lost EVERYTHING. Let me assure you that this was not done intentionally or out of a despite to rip off anyone. You can’t say the same though can you?
“Over the last week I have kept my tongue out of respect for your musical output. I kept silent for the same reason I waited outside record stores as kid each and every time a Ministry album came out. But there is only so much hypocrisy and bullshit even one of your biggest fans can take.”
According to documents obtained by Music Feeds, a report from a meeting of Soundwave creditors on 7th October states that Ministry are owed $203,952.01 for their Soundwave 2015 appearance. That being said though, Ministry were named as one of the former Soundwave touring company’s creditors when it entered into administration and were therefore part of a Deed of Company Arrangement agreed upon by creditors.
That arrangement stipulates that Maddah will pay back just $4,320,000 to creditors – partially by selling off his staging company – and that creditors will creditors recoup no more that 25 cents on the dollar of the money owed to them. By agreeing to these terms, there is no legal basis for Ministry to pursue Maddah personally for cash.
Read Al Jourgensen’s full statement on his Patreon crowdfunding page, and Maddah’s full reply, below.
This thing is far from over kids.
Maddah’s response to Al Jourgensen
“Dear Al, thank yu for accusing me of “ripping you off”. See the problem with that is that it implies it was something that was done on purpose. Where as I had no intention of ever ripping you off or doing you any harm.
On the contrary have always been a massive fan and a champion for you and Ministry despite all of our collective past experiences. Or that time when you and I had a nrear sold out Rio Grande Blood tour and you didn’t show costing me well over $100K in cancellation costs. Do you remember why the tour cancelled? Let me refersh your memory: You didn’t pay your band.
Remember Joey Jordison & others quitting nd walking out because you had pissed away their wages? That episode crushed a young independent promoter. I had to sell my car, give up my flat and embarrassingly move back in w my parents.
I know you do not give a shot and have never given a shit about anything or anyone besides feeding your various habit, But I worked nights and weekend to pay off the debts from that cancelled tour and still I kept faith in you as a fan.
I gave you Ministry an over the top generous fee well above your worth & for my trouble. You turned up at the 1st show, at my expense, came to the site office and demanded a further USD $35K in cash or, you wouldn’t go on stage. That old chestnut. See Al, I went out of business because the shows did not generate enough money. I have lost EVERYTHING. Let me assure you that this was not done intentionally or out of a despite to rip off anyone. You can’t say the same though can you?
Over the last week I have kept my tongue out of respect for your musical output. I kept silent for the same reason I waited outside record stores as kid each and every time a Ministry album came out. But there is only so much hypocrisy and bullshit even one of your biggest fans can take.
So despsite being broke to the point that I am being evicted and cannnot pay for upcoming medical bills… I begged and borrowed $20K from family and friends a few weeks ago and sent more money to your agent a few weeks ago.
But in your warped mind that is probably perceived as the actions of someone ripping you off.”