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THE BYRDS - CONTRACT SIGNED 01/03/1968 CO-SIGNED BY: THE BYRDS (CHRIS HILLMAN), THE BYRDS (ROGER MCGUINN), THE BYRDS (MICHAEL CLARKE) - HFSID 304811

THE BYRDS: ROGER McGUINN, CHRIS HILLMAN and MICHAEL CLARKE Legal document cementing Clarke's departure from the band, triggered by creative differences and Clarke's heavy drinking. He renounces all future use of the band's name and transfers all rights, except royalties for prior work, to McGuinn and Hillman.

Sale Price $2,380.00

Reg. $2,800.00

Condition: lightly creased
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THE BYRDS: ROGER McGUINN, CHRIS HILLMAN and MICHAEL CLARKE
Legal document cementing Clarke's departure from the band, triggered by creative differences and Clarke's heavy drinking. He renounces all future use of the band's name and transfers all rights, except royalties for prior work, to McGuinn and Hillman. (This contract notwithstanding, McGuinn and Hillman later failed in court to prevent Clarke from using the group's name on tour.)
Document signed: "Michael Clarke", "James Roger McGuinn", "Christopher Hillman", 2 pages, 8½x13. Beverly Hills, California, 1968 January 3. Document titled "Agreement for Sale of Partnership Interest". The parties having agreed "that it is in the best interest of all concerned" that Michael Clarke resign from the partnership known as The Byrds, Clarke irrevocably transfers ½ of his interest in the partnership to each of the remaining partners (McGuinn and Hillman). Clarke will take with him his musical instruments and equipment, and is liable for his share of the income taxes on income accrued to date by the partnership. He renounces all claim to the partnership name, The Byrds, but will still receive royalty income from recordings on which he performed. No remaining claims and obligations between Clarke and the other partners shall remain in effect. Although far less famous, and with only two #1 hits ("Mr. Tambourine Man" and "Turn! Turn! Turn!", the Byrds had a profound influence on rock music; some music historians consider them as important as The Rolling Stones and even The Beatles. The first American band to rival the British invasion groups, they burst on the scene in 1965 with a blend of rock and folk music. (Although the Byrds recorded many original compositions, their two biggest hits were covers - dramatically reshaped - of tunes from Bob Dylan and Pete Seeger.) Original band members included ROGER McGUINN and Gene Clark, the main vocalists and former acoustic guitarists now using electric instruments, CHRIS HILLMAN on electric bass, and David Crosby (even better known with his subsequent group, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young). MICHAEL CLARKE soon joined the band as its drummer. "Eight Miles High," which began climbing the charts in early 1966, was a landmark in the emergence of psychedelic rock, but many radio stations - considering it a drug song - refused to play it, and the Byrds never had another top hit. Michael Clarke soon developed serious creative differences with other band members over material, and walked out of a recording session (although he continued to participate in live performances). His heavy alcohol use, which no doubt aggravated tensions and would lead to his early death from liver failure, was another cause. Essentially, he was fired from the band by McGuinn and Hillman. The Byrds, with McGuinn now its core, continued to release influential albums - moving in yet another new direction: country rock. But other members departed, Hillman and Crosby especially successful in new bands. Clarke, though not as successful, did continue to perform with Gene Clark and other artists, including Jerry Jeff Walker. In 1985, Clarke and Clark formed and toured with a group called "Tribute to the Byrds", which many venues shortened in promotions to simply The Byrds. This led McGuinn, Hillman and David Crosby to take Clarke to court over use of the name. They failed to get an injunction, and Clarke continued to tour with "The Byrds Featuring Michael Clarke." These band members set aside their differences to perform three songs together during the Byrds' induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (1991). Gene Clark died later that year, as did Michael Clarke in 1993. David Crosby purchased The Byrd's name from Clarke's estate. Three horizontal folds. Two filing holes at top. Staple holes at top left corner. Lightly creased. Otherwise, fine condition.

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