Nashville singer-songwriter Rae Solomon has launched a $25-million lawsuit against Live Nation, alleging the concert promotion company ripped off her idea for an all-female country music festival — and which the artists who were supposed to have performed had never heard of.
In legal documents filed in Tennessee, reports Billboard, Solomon claims that Live Nation stole her idea for the Zenitheve Music Festival, which was to have taken place in Chicago and was to have featured Miranda Lambert, Maren Morris, Lauren Alaina And Lindsay Eli.
All those artists, however, will be performing on the opening day of Live Nation’s upcoming Country LakeShake Festival, set to be held in Chicago from June 21-23.
In her suit, Solomon alleges that “the opening day of the Country LakeShake is, essentially, a mirror image of Zenitheve.”
Solomon’s lawsuit states that she had been pursuing the idea of a Lilith Fair-like festival featuring country artists since as early as 2017, and gave interviews to several media outlets outlining her idea.
In addition, Solomon claims she met with Live Nation’s Women Nation Fund in hopes of securing a partnership and sponsors for what she had dubbed Zenitheve, which she was targeting for May 2019 in Chicago, even going as far as to secure a venue and put together a contract and budget proposal.
When her plans fell through, however, she says she was shocked to see Live Nation, in November 2018, announce the lineup for the 2019 LakeShake fest, and immediately began alleging theft.
However, management teams from Lambert, Morris and Ell each told Billboard they had no knowledge of the Zenitheve Music Festival, and their artists had not been booked. “There was no offer for Miranda, and I am not familiar with the Zenitheve festival,” said a rep for Lambert’s management.
Solomon’s lawyer, Douglas S. Johnston, is seeking compensatory damages of $25 million, as well as punitive damages and litigation costs.
Live Nation declined Billboard‘s request for comment.