Puerto Rican musician and actor Don Omar and CBS Radio’s “El Zol 107.9” WLZL, Baltimore-Washington had hoped to make beautiful music together last summer at the cluster’s summer concert at the Rosecroft Raceway. But contract negotiations broke down and CBS uninvited Omar, and now the artist is suing CBS. The platinum-selling singer is seeking $9 million, alleging his reputation took a hit on social media after the station made it look like he bailed out.
Omar’s team and CBS had several rounds of negotiations as the broadcaster tried to figure out how to bring the well-known artist to its event and meet his fee of $100,000 for the one-hour show plus travel and related expenses. At one point the plan was to scrap his live band and replace it with a disc jockey spinning pre-recorded music.
As those talks progressed, Omar alleges CBS requested his publicity photos and began marketing the show using his name and face. But two months later with a final contract still not signed, Omar received an email saying CBS was no longer interested in having him at the show. In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Baltimore, Omar claims CBS negotiated in bad faith and used his “celebrity image and persona” to “boost ticket sales and attendance.”
The complaint also alleges that WLZL “unilaterally deprived” Omar of radio airplay “by refusing to play his music on their radio station.” He says that alone is worth $1 million in lost royalties. CBS has not yet responded to the lawsuit, and it had no comment on the case.