An unexpected outcome of Record Store Day 2012, the children who were featured in the background vocals of the song ‘Contact’ on Phish’s debut album Juntahave filed a class action lawsuit against Phish for royalties. Fresh off the release of the album on vinyl and costing between $50-80 a piece, the kids are looking for their percent of the sales, commensurate with their portion on Contact.
“We were recruited by Phish to sing ‘the tires are the things on the car that make contact with the road’ and we did so many takes and got nothing. Not even free tickets to a future show, no ice cream, none of those balloons they had blowing up off that tank,” complained former child-singer Melody Blaine, now 29. “We got gypped so we are looking for our cut of the sales, and when you are charging $50 fucking bucks for an album, you know damn well they have a few extra bucks to cover our share.” “Seriously, FIFTY FUCKING DOLLARS! How many new shirts does Page need?” According to the children’s lawyer, Harvey Granderson, the total amount sought works out to $2,680,000, or $134,000 for each of the 20 children who sang backup vocals. “Phish made a big error in not getting these kids to sign in crayon on the dotted line when they were 5 or 6 years old. And now they will pay.” The children, now grown up and some with kids of their own, sang outside the Phish offices in Burlington the chorus to ‘Contact’, but to no avail. Calls placed to Phish’s management were not returned. Worse still, a number of the singers went back to their car and were bummed when they found out it had been towed.