John Fogerty: CCR Done In By A Mere 90 Grand!

Author: Jim Johnson

John Fogerty says his decision not to play with the other members of Creedence Clearwater Revival when they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993 stems from their decision to sell their rights to CCR songs to Saul Zaentz of Fantasy Records in 1988 for $30,000 each.

An excerpt of his forthcoming memoir, Fortunate Son: My Life, My Music, has been printed in Billboard, and in it Fogerty writes: “Way back in 1968, I had made an agreement with [my brother] Tom[Fogerty], Doug [Clifford] and Stu [Cook] to be equal partners. I let them share in my songwriting money. At the time, I thought I was dealing with people who understood the responsibility of what we had. But in 1988, they sold their votes to Zaentz for $30,000 each — that’s right, thirty pieces of silver. Stu told me, ‘I don’t care what they do with the music — just give me the money.’ I was disgusted.

Book Cover

“In 1988, Saul sued me, claiming that my [1984] song ‘The Old Man Down the Road’ was an exact copy of the Creedence song ‘Run Through the Jungle.’ … My lawyer asked him why he sued. Saul answered, ‘Well, that bass player in Creedence…came to my office and played John’s new album. Stu said, ‘John is ripping off Creedence! You should sue him!’ I felt that I had been intentionally stabbed in the back. For Stu to go see Saul — a person who’d cheated and lied and really treated all of us like crap — and do that?

“When the Hall of Fame called in late 1992 [about CCR being inducted]…I said, ‘No.’ I’m just not going to stand on a stage with those people three in a row, play our songs and be presented as a band — particularly because these guys sold their rights in that band to my worst enemy.”

Fogery also reveals that CCR was also asked to perform at President Clinton‘s inauguration in January 1993, but he also turned that down, saying, “I don’t play with those guys. We will never play as a band again.”

Fortunate Son: My Life, My Music will be published on October 6th.


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