Either Beyoncé‘s father Mathew Knowles is getting sandbagged by Live Nation, or else he just made the most colossal publicity mistake of his life. According to legal papers obtained by TMZ, Live Nation claimed to Beyoncé that her father had, as her manager, stolen money from the artist. An audit conducted by Beyoncé’s legal team corroborated Live Nation’s claim. This resulted in Knowles’s dismissal (replaced by a Live Nation employee!) just prior to a potentially profitable tour. Knowles’s legal filing requests depositions from Live Nation employees to determine how the company concluded that he was claiming an unlawful share of Beyoncé’s income.
None of these accusations were made public when Beyoncé fired her father’s management company in March. Mathew Knowles claimed at the time that Music World International would be focusing on the gospel artists it represented. His legal filing, then, indicates either that accusation has become an open secret in the industry (and thus his revelation would not be news to anyone to whom it mattered financially), or that he is so convinced that the evidence will show him to be innocent that he’s willing to introduce the spectre of doubt himself. Or else he has started a disastrous chain of events for himself. Without any of the accounting information, it’s impossible to determine whether there was any mishandling of Beyoncé’s finances, and if so, who was responsible. One thing’s for sure: this legal battle will likely get ugly.