posted on October 6, 2012 at 9:12 am

an open letter to stephen judge


i do not recant

i am furious with your insulting royalty statements

i intend to put your royalty statements online for the whole world to see

with annotations by an american record biz auditor

and as i wrote to you personally

if you dont sort this out i have some very interesting new allies

who are prepared to help me get to the bottom of this once and for all

i am so fucking sick of being ripped off and underpaid

you are the final straw that broke this camels back

let me make this plain

i am leaving the church because of you

and also because i am unhappy with the bands internal business attitude

but definitely its mainly you and now your ludicrous response

so if i dont receive my adequate share of the pie

i mean regardless of what you say stephen

you made about 30 or 40 grand for that period

and we got a hundred dollars each

(300 extra for my solo albums)

keep denying that if you like but the statements will be here ,on facebook and anywhere else very soon


20 or 30 years ago when you were just a little kid

we made these records!

and i still aint never been sorted out properly

stephen, im as mad as hell and i aint gonna take it!


re; sydney morning herald

i was flustered

i was trying to ameliorate a bad situation

i shouldnt have backtracked

i will not again

i will not back down

i am going to have satisfaction or my day in court

steve kilbey, in canberra , on tour


104 Responses to “no i do not recant”

  1. avatar
    Kohl Ette | 6 October 2012 at 9:22 am #

    Canberra seems an appropriate place for you to be right now, maintaining the righteous rage. Your ‘imbursements’ do seem an outrage. I’m hearing Tom Petty sing I Won’t Back Down, love it. Go Steve!

  2. avatar
    Anonymous | 6 October 2012 at 9:36 am #

    oh, it’s good to witness a soul with backbone. (thank you.)

  3. avatar
    Ade | 6 October 2012 at 9:50 am #

    Seen this response?

  4. avatar
    skellngtn | 6 October 2012 at 9:58 am #

    “i am leaving the church because of you…”
    this one line has crushed me…

    “i am unhappy with the bands internal business attitude”
    and this one just made me sad.

    Hopefully some fruitful resolution can be found in the very near future. The Church is, as their Arista promo notes, The Sum of the Parts. I have loved and collected each and every solo project the boys have put out for these 25+ years I’ve been a fan (and sought out all that came before I was introduced to them). But something incredibly magical happens when they all get in the same room and someone pushes the record button. To think that aspect of their output might stop is…heart wrenching.

  5. avatar
    Boriah | 6 October 2012 at 10:18 am #

    “and we got a hundred dollars each (300 extra for my solo albums)”. No wonder why you´re so pissed off. That´s INSULTING.

    Steve, maybe this (metaphorically speaking) may help:

    Two months ago I had a fight with a stupid jackass in a pub. And I won. Sometimes you have to fight. Fight for what is yours.

    Stay brave.


  6. avatar
    Anonymous | 6 October 2012 at 11:15 am #

    i had a prof in college… Mr. Berry. he had a tirade in a required class he had to teach (too). I don’t think he liked teaching required classes very much; he was a classical lit buff and in those classes (I had with him), he was the happiest/most giving teacher I ever had the joy of being taught by… one day he blew his lid regarding students’ lack of commitment to learning; i.e. – that almost everyone it seemed was in college to get a degree (not to really learn)only to make $$$$. man, he was angry and i felt so bad for him – he was right – and that was many years ago. he was a youngun in the sixties… can you just imagine the mindset of most kids going to school today and the grooming they’ve been handed? and thus, they’ve become even better”executives” that rip off those they can so they don’t get kicked/taken out by those executives higher than them/they must answer to – and it gives them the feeling of power, I guess?

    • avatar
      Once | 7 October 2012 at 2:05 am #

      Good point. I’m filming my first advert at the end of the month. I get to write, produce, direct, lens and edit it. It’s for Swarovski Crystal. But no, it really isn’t, cos it’s a school project. In a sense, instead of getting paid to make it, I am paying to make it. But I’m going to make it as if I’m getting a million bucks for it, cos I’m really excited to be learning this stuff. Yeah, I’m committed.

      People say to me, “But what are ya gonna do when you graduate? Can ya make a lotta money?”

      I don’t know. I try not to think about it. It skews my perspective.

      But I’ll tell ya one thing – despite my artistic posturing, if I put my heart and soul into a creation that reached people all over the world and continued to do so 30-plus years later, I would be FUCKING PISSED OFF if some asshole talentless executive reaped the rewards of said creation(s) – in essence, kidnapping a part of me and holding it for ransom – while I sat here trying to figure out how to pay the rent.

      Yeah, that would feel pretty shitty.

      GO SK.

      Luv and support –

  7. avatar
    Steven Krut | 6 October 2012 at 11:18 am #

    You’re right to be so furious and to take steps to put things right. It’s making me very sad, though, to see my favorite band blow up. 🙁

  8. avatar
    kerri moss | 6 October 2012 at 11:46 am #

    im mad as hell and you shouldnt take it anymore….youre doing the right thing steven…tom petty is the man who knows first hand about such things and he didnt back down and as hard as it was his band stood with him…but thats beside the point its just so bloody wrong and i believe in putting the truth out there for all to see…so i say go for steven….another great who had similar issues is neil young and im sure theres many more so put it out there to all who you can and im sure you’ll get the info you need to fight this shit.. much love, namaste…k xxxx

  9. avatar
    sharon daniel | 6 October 2012 at 11:59 am #

    Behind you 110% Steve. Its disgraceful & insulting, stand your ground. Total & utter support!

  10. avatar
    The Sign of Fire | 6 October 2012 at 12:13 pm #

    Is this the guy?

  11. avatar
    Louisa | 6 October 2012 at 12:30 pm #

    You’re not really going to leave The Church are you???? Please, please don’t. Hope it all works out for you man, take care xo

  12. avatar
    Anonymous | 6 October 2012 at 12:46 pm #

    Here’s an excerpt from an interview with Judge from November 2010:

    QRD – What’s been your biggest selling release & why do you think it was?

    Stephen – The Church, because they are a legendary band & have a loyal hardcore following.

    QRD – What release that you’ve done was the most important & special to you personally?

    Stephen – The current reissues of the Church catalog, Heyday & Starfish are two of my favorites records of all time, so pretty special to have them on my label.

    The rest of the interview can be found at:

  13. avatar
    BROKEN TOYS AND HEROS | 6 October 2012 at 1:49 pm #

    Slaughter them all…the greedy pigs in their sloth
    twisting and churning up a messy mess mess…

    Down goes thee he taketh from my hand with blade
    behind filthy luring back…
    Spill every last drop so the masses will see the reflection off
    the glistening sun…

    Right the ship…Steadfast the course …

    Mouths to feed , home to heat…


    Shame them First – than tame them neXt !!!

    much love !!!
    Darrin + Laura + Alex + Kristina !!!

    The Daz family

  14. avatar
    matthew | 6 October 2012 at 2:16 pm #

    You got my support SK. You all deserve far better and I’m sorry it’s come to this.

  15. avatar
    davem | 6 October 2012 at 3:59 pm #

    I really hope this can all be worked out.
    I would post on the womb but can’t log on.
    Totally fucking depressed.

  16. avatar
    Andreas | 6 October 2012 at 4:02 pm #

    Steve, I’m with you on whatever, but please don’t leave the church. You’ve been together through thick and thin, and you’ve built something unique. Please don’t throw this all away. You would not hurt your producers with such a move, or anyone in the music industry. You would just hurt your fans, and probably, yourself. I’ll always be on your side, will always read you, will always support you as I have tried to do with my very modest means by purchasing every music you have produced. I hope this entitles me to ask you, from the bottom of my heart: please reconsider leaving the church. I believe, if you speak with Marty who’s always been very close to you, he’ll make you change your mind. Please speak with the guys, you’ll find you have many reasons to go on.
    Lots of love and support, Andreas Genoa/Italy

  17. avatar
    JAMES DUNN | 6 October 2012 at 5:03 pm #

    Sorry to hear the sad news.I hope it does not Jade your great creative force.There is some really good things going on in the Space rock world.I even heard some members of Hawkwind are touring the 40th year of the Album Space Ritual in its entirety.Gods speed be with you Steve!

  18. avatar
    Cath | 6 October 2012 at 5:31 pm #

    Stand your ground indeed Steve, you guys have given the world so so much of yourselves, from inner levels, the most beautiful musics. Have these people held accountable, hope you get justice, but please don’t discorporate the Church, we will all be very saddened. Don’t let a few idiots and a lifetime of opportunists take from you guys what makes you magic, your chemistry your togetherness, your relationships. There would probably be helpers within your fan base that could assist with a great many things, if you but ask. xxx
    thank god for the arts, 🙂

  19. avatar
    Billy Baldwin | 6 October 2012 at 5:37 pm #

    So this is the end of the church? Can’t the fans make this band survive. Forget the record companies. Do it direct on line with no middlemen. Sell your new work as downloads, tour as you do, sell your merch this way. Would love to chat about ideas to make this work. I think the old model is over. Need to look at new ways to make money and survive.

    Your fans love you what you do. Younger people certainly are blown away by the band when they see you live. Look at the past tour you did with 3 albums. It was the best i’d ever seen. You guys defy age. There is no one like you.

    There needs to be new innovative ways to make money through this beautiful thing you guys create.

    I say Church fans need to unite here to help this band. The bond you have with your audience is like no other. The Church fans are real music fans, and we appreciate the music and the effort that you go to to make the great catolgue of music available. We want you to continue. We will buy your music and I know there is heaps in the pipeline. Don’t quit Steve. I know you guys will survive. We need to come up with a new model to make it work for the band.

    Peace and love

  20. avatar
    Adam carrel | 6 October 2012 at 5:41 pm #

    Im with you steve. The climate is fucked. I’ll buy your back catalog again ( off blank cd if you sign it) there’s gotta be a better way ( ask john butler ( trio) )

  21. avatar
    sharon daniel | 6 October 2012 at 6:08 pm #

    PLEASE DONT LEAVE THE CHURCH. Ultimately its your decision but surely there are other ways to sort this travesty out. Once a fan always a fan & will support whatever the ultimate decision xx

  22. avatar
    Ryan Murdock | 6 October 2012 at 6:25 pm #

    It’s unfuckingbelievably insulting that the artists who made this music get paid such a pittance for it. Is that even $1 a day??? The publishing industry is similar, so many people with a hand out taking a cut for doing very little. All parasiting off the creativity of the artist who got them that income in the first place. I’m in your corner Killa. Stick it to those fuckers.

    At the same time, it’d be a terrible shame to see The Church reach its end at the height of your collective creative powers. It feels like you’re riding a bit of a wave with Untitled, the hall of fame and all that recent stuff – with the promise of even better on the horizon. Far better to break away from these companies and make a mint for yourselves, then flip them all off. Massive success is the best form of revenge.

  23. Kraig
    Kraig | 6 October 2012 at 6:50 pm #

    Wow, so this is how it all ends?

    NO WAY MAN! Not the typical money issue thing, that’s sad. Can’t let this silliness get the best of you or the boys, just sue and get your fair share, move on and put the music on your own label. You have enough fans out there that will assist and create something new and majical to make this work! Depressing to think you can’t work this out someway somehow, hopefully Stephen Judge will come to his senses and fork over the pork instead of feeding you some business shit! Fuck, why not just get out of that contract and have all your music downloadable and if anyone wants to purchase something it can be on your own Unorthodox label? Cheers and prayers to you and the band that it all works out for you and us fans! Don’t quit, this is only the beginning! I was hoping for a 50th Anniversary Tour someday!? 30 albums ain’t enough, we want more because you guys kick ass! So one fan owning a record label will ruin 30 years of The Church? Wow, bet he feels like crap now. Rightfully so.

    If there’s anything we can do as a fanbase, let us know!? WE ARE THERE!

    Good Fortunes!
    Your greatest fan & friend in Saint Louis, Missouri-USA!

    • Kraig
      Kraig | 6 October 2012 at 7:27 pm #

      Oh, and another thing i forgot to mention is it makes me also sick to think that i paid 2nd Motion $100 bucks for your solo records box set (which is awesome btw) and you probably only got a stinkin $1 from my sale, fucking bums me out!

      • Kraig
        Kraig | 6 October 2012 at 7:37 pm #

        …another thing, it doesn’t take a math genius, business PhD, Masters, or an Accountant to know or find thievery. Shit, pass the spreadsheets along to us we’ll take a look at it, my Dad was a Tax Auditor for the IRS for 30 years, I’d have him look at it for FREE if he was still alive. But I learned a lot from him and I also tutored math and algebra, so post them spreadsheets and let’s see the thieving. I’m sick and tired of people taking advantage of people too regardless! Getting angrier by the minute to think this punk company is going to ruin our favorite musician and band!

  24. avatar
    andy | 6 October 2012 at 7:03 pm #

    stop this fucking nonsense right now.
    if you want to finish the band, just do it.
    don’t use record company shennanagins as an excuse.
    how many times over the years have you threatened to pull the plug?
    you know in your heart that nothing you do is the equal of the church.
    sorry, but that’s the honest truth.
    iv’e bought EVERY dammned thing you have ever recorded.
    your’e good….but you ain’t the church.
    REAL sonic magic occurs when you four hit it off.
    you will never come close to this either alone or with any of your many colaberaters(of which i wish i was one).
    cut the crap…make a definitive statement because this is ripping your fan’s hearts to bits.
    so…c’mon…black armbands or what?
    you ‘n i have never traded bullshit with each other….let’s not do so now.
    much love and respect,

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 6 October 2012 at 9:24 pm #

      ITS OVER !

    • avatar
      Will Baucom | 8 October 2012 at 2:19 pm #

      Andy is correct. I also have everything, every bit of music sold by you. you are the man! But your creation, “The Church”, is somhting magical. Fix the issues and move on, everyone of the fans will but it off bandcamp. But do it as The Church!

  25. avatar
    BROKEN TOYS AND HEROS | 6 October 2012 at 7:14 pm #


    What can we do to help ???

    What would you like us to do for you ???

    There are mountains to stand on , we are a nation of
    people who hold you and The Church in very high regard…

    Ask of us all something , we would rather stand with you than
    sit idle and wait….these are not teenage fanboys and girls (maybe once very long ago )…

    These are powerful , intellectual women and men who , together , who have a
    very loud and powerful voice….

    Use Us !!! Ask us !!!
    There is no seperation between anymore …

    We r all but a family of love with music in our hearts and souls…
    created and provided by 4 amazing men….thank you …forever…as always….
    How can all of us help you ???

    Together – we can , apart – we just ache …


  26. avatar
    eekie | 6 October 2012 at 9:26 pm #

    I’m not surprised Judge’s reply infuriated you Steve — it is exceptionally condescending. How he ever thought that would calm the situation is beyond me.

    Instead of that overlong and mostly self promoting response, Judge would have been far better off if he had written something along the lines of “Second Motion is committed to dealing with our clients with integrity and honesty and therefore is willing to work with Steve Kilbey and a financial professional of his choice to review the records of the sales he’s disputing. If any additional monies are found to be due him, they will be promptly paid.” And then DO it!

    If serious issues are uncovered the band (and SK for his solo and side projects with the label) should be able to break the contract they have with SM. If there are too many expenses for the income (but all are legit) , then perhaps the band and SM need to devise a different business plan. But obviously something isn’t working now.

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 6 October 2012 at 9:49 pm #

      as usual i am at odds with everyone holly.

      • avatar
        BROKEN TOYS AND HEROS | 6 October 2012 at 11:45 pm #

        Holly is absolutely correct !!!

        I may have had differences with Eekie in the past , but she is SPOT ON !!!

        Emotions , both positive and negative , cloud ones own judgements at times…
        If everything you believe is to be true , than you have no other choice but
        to make a decision that will ensure that your career and livelihood will
        continue to create and inspire , ultimately – PAY THE BILLS , PUT FOOD ON THE TABLE ,

        SORRY FOLKS !!!

        There is nothing more clear than that…throw out artistic integrity , band fortitude,
        and mistakes and misleedings of the past…FUCK ALL THAT !!!
        Many of us who have children will sacrifice everything for creature comforts for
        our offsprings … they and ONLY they matter !!!

        Steve –
        YOU MUST do everything in your power to never allow them to go hungry or without
        in any way , shape , or form…
        YOU MUST DO WHAT YOU BELIEVE IS RIGHT – not off of charged emotions but for
        the only purpose to ENSURE that those girls can and will have the best lives possible.
        I will sacrifice everything for my children, and I FUCKING HAVE !!! My health declines
        every dam day but I clutch onto my wife and kids and we persevere , just as you MUST !!!

        I have read the full statement repeatedly from Judge …and it is condescending, critical,
        self promoting and self indulgent…yeah…he made sacrifices…WE ALL FUCKN HAVE !!!

        The fuckn jab at ALL OF US (we hang on ur every word) is insulting !!! Not only will I never, and
        I have purchased from Second Motion in the past and at the merch tables…WOW – HE JUST KEEPS
        ABOUT GOING TO SEE THE SYDNEY SHOW ON HIS OWN DIME…listen and read !!! It was a business expense and that’s how you logged in on your taxes – didn’t you ??? And if you didn’t
        than he is absolutely ignorant !!! Everyone with any intelligence would !!!
        This is all a fuckn mess and it will get far worse than better , gather the girls – look into their eyes
        talk to them…tell them the truth …make a decision of self-preservation based on them and you !!!

        We can all easily denounce Second Motion and thru social media…make it VERY DIFFICULT for
        them to be prosperous in the future…easily…but what is the point ??? If its a bad deal, its a bad deal…GET OUT OF IT ASAP !!! Let the rest of the artists on ‘his’ label figure it out on their own…and if you are correct – THEY WILL soon enough !!!

        We, the fans and friends and even secondary family members – we do matter to a certain degree …

        But no one , NOTHING , is more important that those girls and YOUR future providing for them !!!

        Make the right decision !!! Not a hasty emotion driven one …if you are correct regarding the
        mismanagement of Second Motion – it will come out in spades and be exposed and that will be the end of that…than you MUST MOVE FORWARD !!!

        Regarding your departure from The Church…I agree with Andy , there is nothing …NO ONE ,
        stronger than the 4 of you combined …only the four of you can make this right again – and rest
        assured WE WILL ALL BE AT YOUR SIDE – ALL FOUR OF YOU !!! You have become extended family
        members to us all…We will not turn our backs or a blind eye …you brought us all together by your music – The Church has much more to offer than what each individual can ever possibly do on his
        own !!!


  27. avatar
    andy | 6 October 2012 at 10:07 pm #

    mr judge’s account of things reads thus:

    ‘Second Motion Records responds to comments made by Steve Kilbey

    October, 5th 2012

    Raleigh, NC

    In light of some of the comments Steve Kilbey (lead singer of The Church) have made on social media outlets and press, we (unfortunately) feel like we have to respond to these comments and accusations and make a statement. Normally we feel like these issues should be kept internal to discuss but since they have unfortunately been made public, we feel like we have to respond as well.

    As anyone who knows, listens or simply follows his day to day interactions on his social media outlets, Steve is a very passionate, emotional and creatively gifted musician and human being and will say what’s on his mind for the world to hear and often make knee-jerk reactions to anything going on in his life and the world around him and we know he has a legion of loyal follows to hang on every single world.

    We 100% encourage and support this idea (as do the other members of the band) as its who he is and we would not want him to be any other way, its what makes Kilbey, Kilbey and we love him for it. However, as we all know and surely have done in our lifetime as well we sometimes stick our foot in our own mouth and when you live by those standards in your daily life, you can sometimes say things that you regret that may lead other people to misguided and misinformed information and also hurt others maybe intentionally or unintentionally.

    We want to acknowledge that Steve has since come out (only hours later) and recanted everything he said and admitted that it was wrong of him to go to social media to air his frustrations and his issues. In an article written by the Sydney Morning Herald, Steve goes on to express that his frustrations are more directed at the issues involving running a “successful business” in what we all know is a very challenging music business today, Steve ended this retracted statement by stating that “this is nothing to do with Second Motion Records, its like a scream of frustration.”

    We want to highlight that final statement as it can easily be buried in the message, which is ok because not only do we 100% understand exactly what his frustrations are (and we agree and share those frustrations with the music business as well) but the important thing to understand that in this case, Steve is right, this has nothing to do with Second Motion Records it is a much bigger issue that scratches at the surface of all of the challenges bands, labels, artist, publicist, distributors, record stores, media outlets and anyone actively ‘working’ in the music business today as their primary means of income face and fight with on a daily basis. Steve’s ‘screaming out’ is simply the same screaming we all feel with the frustrations of this sometimes cruel business to not reward those who work so hard everyday and create music and all of those that work so hard around it to get it out there, heard, seen and available for purchase.

    This is not an easy task, it gets harder and harder every day, as to reach every fan is very difficult, we are not all trying to just reach a ‘select few’ who would buy anything and everything an artist does, we LOVE these people with all of our hearts because its what often keep us all going and moving forward, but simple economics state that we cannot live off those purchases alone, I think that is common sense and every fan will understand this. We all want our heros and the musicians and music we love to be heard by everyone and for those behind the songs to get every single penny they so rightfully deserve. When you factor in all of the aspects of what it takes to get the music out to everyone (not just on the web or iTunes but also to shows, and to all of the independent record stores that have supported and loved and curated bands over the years) as well as chain stores for those who don’t have options of seeing the band, buying from the internet or iTunes, not everyone has a computer, a credit card or the means or ways to get music and its important that its available in every format possible (streams, digital, stores, shows, everywhere) so anyone looking for it can find it. That is a network and involves a lot of inherit costs that cannot be avoided, and therefore chips away at what we all get in the end, but it’s the sacrifice we make to make sure that kid, with no computer, no credit card and $10-$15 dollars to his or her name, can walk into a store in their hometown and attempt to purchase music from The Church. Music that may change their life and have them pick up a guitar or instrument and start their own band that we all will love one day in the future. That is what its all about in some ways and in order to get music to everyone there are unfortunately sacrifices that have to be made economically (there is a cost involved in those loss leader retailers selling the music), otherwise you only reach a small group of people who have the ability (or desire) to have access and that limits the growth and network of the music.

    We understand the frustrations we all face as we all feel like we are working 4 times harder to get less, that’s something everyone feels in this economy and in the challenges of this business. It is extremely difficult to keep an organization going in today’s economy much less music business, and we all feel this pinch and frustrations. I, myself, own three businesses just to stay afloat. In addition to being the owner of Second Motion Records, I also own the music media outlet and print magazine, Blurt Magazine and I am the owner of the indie record store, Schoolkids Records in Raleigh, NC which I work in every single day, running my businesses out of the retail location in my hometown while running the register and getting music from other artists to people as well. On a daily basis, I have hundreds of people walk into my store that have never heard of any of the bands on my label, much less The Church and do not know who they are, who Steve Kilbey is or that we even have a label, I of course try hard to change that while at the same time respect the fact that everyone has different tastes.

    But the reason I run three companies is because that is what I have to do basically to survive. I live very minimal, struggle like everyone else paycheck to paycheck to pay my bills and as hard as I work everyday I certainly wish things would get easier and that it all will ‘pay off’ one day. However I do not bank on that and know better than to assume that will ever happen, so I roll up my sleeves and fight the fight another day. I know that what I am doing is making a difference and getting music to people and that to me is the most important part, the financial aspects of ‘behind the scenes’ are mine to figure out, and my two degrees in Business Management & Accounting from NC State University (and my 22 years experience) certainly help in that matter as its something I work on constantly every single day while in the store talking to the customers. So believe me no one understands the frustrations more than I do. I share those with Steve.

    In many ways, Steve’s venting and scream speaks for all of us.

    Now, since statements have been made that are inaccurate and misinformed, people will run and jump to their own conclusions, therefore we feel like as a label we have to clear the air on a few small issues.

    First and foremost, the comments about the band making only “$100 each” is totally false. The rest of the band shares our frustrations in the fact that there is information out there saying otherwise, its simply not true and every other member of the band will tell you this is not true and are doing so where appropriate to respond to these comments.

    Each of the band members have made MUCH more than that, they have been paid every single penny in royalties owed for the sales of their merchandise on the road, digital sales, licensing, and distribution of their catalog, solo records and anything we have sold, in any format over the last several years. In fact, during every tour I have kept a spreadsheet that I would update every single night at closing and onn the last night of the tour hand the cash over to each band member that is owed. As the ‘label’ our responsibility falls in that we upfront all of the money for marketing, publicity, distribution and manufacturing of the items and after those expenses are recouped, we split everything evenly with the band 50/50. A true partnership, 50/50 on the money coming in, 50/50 on the expenses going out. More or less acting as the ‘bank’ for the albums up fronting all of the initial costs, when that amount is recouped we give the band their share and have to date to the penny. These numbers can be confusing, its not black and white simple math and that can be confusing especially if accounting and numbers are not one of your strong points, but my job obviously is to communicate that and help explain. Some people are better at understanding this than others, we ALL want it to be more simple but we cannot control that aspect it is controlled by the network of the music industry and retail and the way people buy (or don’t buy) music today which we all know has changed dramatically over the last 5-10 years in way we cannot even get into explaining here without writing another novel. 🙂

    For the last studio album, Untitled #23, the band each have made a lot more than $100, every penny has been paid previously for the sales over the last 4 years of the album. What Steve refers to when he says “$100” is a small royalty that is due now for mechanicals, which is publishing money owed to songwriters, which is a small flat rate paid on each album sale and that also has been paid up to date 100% on every album sold. The amount for this period (the last 6 months of sales) is low, because the rest of the royalties have already been paid out previously and over the last 6 months only a small portion is owed because after 4 years, obviously, the sales for the album are very minimal as it has become a ‘catalog piece’ for us and the band. So make no mistake, the band has been paid FAR more than $100 each for the sales of album, this is just one small period of money owed for a slow period of sales for the band where the band has not been active or toured for the entire year of 2012 therefore (obviously) we have not sold a lot of records over the last year. Comments to assume that is all they have made only $100 each to date are grossly inaccurate and misinformed. Kilbey’s statements to that are inaccurate and we know he regrets making those comments and accept the retracting of those comments as his way of making an apology. As its simply not true.

    With that cleared up, one other important thing we want to communicate is our purpose.

    Second Motion Records is not an ‘evil corporation’ we are one person, me. As much of a ‘mom & pop’ organization as you can get, in fact we are not even that large, just ‘pop’ as I do not have a partner or anyone else running the organization but myself. We of course have great partners for distribution (Redeye) and hire great publicists to work our records, but beyond that every other aspect of the company is run by myself, from answering every single inquiry and email, to packing every single individual order that we receive and packing every promotional item we mail out to try and help out albums get the attention we feel they deserve.

    Anyone who has ever bought anything from us (or me) knows that we pride ourselves in offering the best customer service we possibly can and where we can (within reason) respond personally to every single fan that writes us. Those who are fans of The Church, and have seen the band touring in the United States in the last three years and have visited the merchandise table, have met me as I have gone on the road with the band on their last three US Tours. Anyone who spoke with me at any length of time knows that I am extremely passionate about The Church’s music and like the rest of us, a huge massive fan of the band as well so we all share this same passion and I think anyone who knows me or has had contact with me in any way knows this and surely realizes that this is a labor of love. (for the record, I also attended their glorious Sydney Opera House show last year in Australia, flew myself over on my own dime as I was not going to miss that wonderful event).

    One thing that is important to note is that one of the reasons why I started Second Motion Records (after 7 years being the head of Sales, Marketing, A&R, Accounting and the GM of Redeye Distribution & Yep Roc Records) is because I wanted to help The Church realize what could be the next step in their careers, Marty Willson-Piper and I met around 10 years ago and spoke for years about the business challenges the band faced and discussed what possible scenarios and business structures could work in the future to help the band have more control of their music, which in turn means making more money. The band could have signed to many other labels, including my former employer, but after discussing at length for years the issues the band faced, my advice to the band was that they needed to “release the album on their own label” and do it themselves. Which, in Australia they have done and continue to do. They all knew, however, that in the United States they needed someone to help them with this as not only do they not live in this country but they also don’t have time to run an entity of that magnitude while also being in the band, running their own label in their native country and being self-managed (the band for years has been managed by guitarist Marty Willson-Piper and his partner Tiare Helberg) but its all a ‘family affair’.

    This is when I decided it was time to leave my job at Redeye/Yep Roc (which I was at the highest position in the company) and start my own entity. I was willing to take that risk because it was a dream of mine to work with The Church since I had been a massive fan since the age of 16 when I saw them in a small club in Raleigh, NC. In addition I also had the chance to work with Tommy Keene and one of my all-time heros, producer Daniel Lanois (who had asked me to simply work with him as a project manager for one album and go on tour with him in Ireland and Canada to support the album and his own label, Red Floor Records).

    I had a good paying job so it was a tough decision to make, but the night before I convinced myself to make the jump, I said to a friend of mine “if you told me when I was 16 years old that I would have the chance to work with The Church, Tommy Keene & Daniel Lanois and I had not taken that job? I would have taken myself out into my back yard and grabbed myself and said “what the hell are you thinking? Why are you doing this in the first place?!” its with that passion and goal that I quit and started Second Motion Records.

    So, when people make comments about “releasing things yourself” it needs to be understood that is exactly why Second Motion exist and curates, our primary goal and reason for existing is to help artist release albums themselves but have someone who understands the business, has experience in distribution, marketing, promotion as well as a degree in business and accounting to help them run the ‘day to day’ aspects of a ‘label’ while at the same time create a ‘network’ and ‘family’ of other artists with the same goals, they invite me into their family and I invite them into mine, all artists sharing a common goal and one common denominator. It’s that simple.

    With all of this now cleared up, we want to simply focus on one thing, continuing to create a network and family of artists who all have the same goals, trying to cut out as many of the middlemen as we can while at the same time making sure the music can reach all of the fans, not just a ‘select few’. The issues with Steve Kilbey & other Church members and their business are purely there own and they will continue to work through those challenges as a group and we will continue to be 100% supportive of the band as a member of their ‘family’ to support in whatever way they deem is the correct step forward from here. We love the band and each of their members and we certainly hope that Steve will reconsider leaving the band, and as challenging as the financial aspects of this industry are for a band in their 31st year being together, we all feel like we have unfinished business to attend to and none of the rest of us, myself, other band members included are ready to throw in the towel and give up. Obviously we all have to be on the same page for that to continue and we here at Second Motion hope that resolution can be achieved and regardless of our role with it going forward, we will be at their next US show front and center and hopefully selling you more great items in the future. If that does not happen, then we will work with the remaining members of the band to continue to keep their music alive and available for all of their past, present and future fans to enjoy and spread the love.

    Thanks again for your attention to this and your loyalty to the band and to us, it is appreciated and respected to levels that you will never know but if we could thank each of you individually we would.

    Sorry for the long winded note here but I feel like its important for everyone to understand the purpose of what we’re trying to accomplish and what the basis of our purpose lies, in, which is honest, artist friendly (artist FIRST) business practices. Regardless of the financial challenges each artist may face we are 100% committed to this and will continue to keep that format, concept, idea, dream going and invite more of those who share those goals to join our family.

    We’re all on the same page and cheering for the same team here, so let’s move on.

    Thanks for listening.

    All the best for the upcoming holiday and best wishes in 2013

    Stephen Judge


    Second Motion Records’

    hardly concise and to the point eh?
    mainly self-agrandisment…..

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 6 October 2012 at 10:32 pm #

      i repeat
      if i am not given satisfaction within a week
      i will have no recourse but to begin the process of getting some satisfaction
      i will keep you all informed naturally…..
      i am prepared to let this whole thing hang out!

      i will never denigrate the other members of the church
      but i will say i have reached an untenable position with them as well!
      in as far as every aspect of our business is concerned.
      i cannot go on with it because its causing me too much fucking grief
      i would rather separate from them and pursue the multitude of possibilities that are constantly opening up for me
      i am seriously considering writing a book about my years in the band
      then i will tell my side of the story
      you all know i aint perfect
      but my disgruntlement with the way things are done
      and my inability to get to the bottom of anything have finally taken their toll
      i would consider going on with them for another try
      but only if we can try it my way for a while
      and if i can get some answers to the questions that are driving me nuts
      however folks
      that seems highly unlikely at this stage……

      • avatar
        andy | 6 October 2012 at 10:46 pm #

        you do still love ’em then!

      • avatar
        kerri moss | 7 October 2012 at 12:33 am #

        love to you and yours steven….ask and you will receive…that higher being is always there…

    • avatar
      Anonymous | 7 October 2012 at 1:33 am #

      the key word in Judge’s response is “unfortunately” – cuz if he was on the same page and not financially defensive, why would his response be an unfortunate one? and though his original reason for starting his label seems honorable within his response other hidden things: i.e – he was at the top of the biz (means he had the expenses of being at the top, and probably still does…) and he states he has to live paycheck to paycheck to pay all of those lifestyle bills too -unless he sold everything from his prior lifestyle to fit his new commitment to honoring artists that would be a lot of overhead to pay for first. as a biz/accounting major, he knows those are all expenses that get taken off the top before payments to artists are equated in.
      therefore, what I see is probably a nice man with good intentions way over
      his head – and without humility/truth, just his own personal vicious cycle.

      a time back I worked with a woman who would mortgage her own home (over and over and over – she had a cool husband, he would let her!) to push whatever was needed to the end to get what was due her clients… then she’d pay her mortgage off when she achieved what was due them. what a little tiny hero she was – all 4 foot 9 of her. god, bless that woman (I’m sure he does!!)

  28. avatar
    kell | 6 October 2012 at 10:30 pm #

    Blessed one,

    It’s said, “Never make an important decision when angry, hungry, or tired.” Soooo, maybee take a little time to contemplate, (at least, all of Sunday) before choosing your Course of Action. I trust you, you’re brilliant, please stay true to what you know in your heart is the right thing to do. And take the time to FEEL it! Holly’s advice sounds good….what’s in the Highest Good of everyone to occur? A little more time, & the answer to this should become apparent…& don’t forget your Muse

  29. avatar
    Justin Gaetano | 6 October 2012 at 10:51 pm #

    Steve, I was born in the year before The Church’s Heyday (1985). After over a quarter of a century of existence, being raised listening to this underrated band’s music (I have very cool parents), I was finally fortunate enough to meet you, Marty, Peter, and Tim after your band played a mind blowing set at The Enmore, December 2012. I sincerely hope that that is not the last time I get to actually witness The Church deliver their powerful ‘sermon’. Of course I understand that at the end of the day you have to do what’s right by your vision, but I am selfishly wishing that that vision does include the continuation of the band. All the best to you four.

  30. avatar
    Berba | 6 October 2012 at 10:57 pm #

    Christ what a Maelstrom! was just thinking why doesn’t SK write a book about it.

  31. avatar
    david duchow | 6 October 2012 at 11:18 pm #

    oy, what a fucking mess. Good luck SK.

  32. avatar
    Lara | 6 October 2012 at 11:29 pm #

    I am so consistently disappointed by the lack of support for the arts in our current economy. I will certainly miss the Church. The shows I saw on your last two US tours were absolutely transcendent. But your work there has to sustain you emotionally as well as financially, and it seems more like a chain around your neck now. Maybe time to let some alternative inspiration get your energy. I’m a huge fan of Isidore, GB3, Painkiller, etc., and you’ve obviously got a knack for trying out new media and means of distribution.

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 7 October 2012 at 6:41 am #

      well art least i got academia on my side , huh?

      • avatar
        Lara | 7 October 2012 at 7:35 am #

        That you do. Too bad our royalty checks are even less than yours!

  33. avatar
    david | 7 October 2012 at 3:02 am #

    …well i for one , only one, do not know what to say ….i’ll give it a shot…that Mother Humper S.Judge even takes a Jab at us ….Laughable ….all we do is like music …I think that bloke is in the wrong buisness…Wish i could sit and Smoke a Big one with you …were all holding our Breath.:(

  34. avatar
    david | 7 October 2012 at 3:06 am #

    .oh yeah ……by the way…good luck without the Killer …that goes for S.Judge ….and the boys…….all their solo work Pales in comparison to Steve’s, and The Church ..It had to be said.. Marty has some delightful stuff but im afraid that Steve’s Bar has always been a little Higher .

  35. avatar
    david | 7 October 2012 at 3:10 am #

    LOL one more thing ……..this asshole Judge acts like he’s in the fucking Band …..Left Jab , right uppercut …sumbitch…has this asshole ever written one note of music in his life?

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 7 October 2012 at 6:38 am #

      no. why is he taking 50 per cent of everything then?

      • avatar
        BROKEN TOYS AND HEROS | 7 October 2012 at 7:43 am #

        I did some quick reseqch and 33% is more like the amount that his take should be negotiated from …. than preferably down because The Church and the other artists ARE the product – to the customer – who buys said products from the retailer ….who makers , inventories , promotes and so on …like any reasonable business model plan….Yeah Jude has a lot invested …but The Church has WAY MORE TO LOSE !!!
        Judge does provide a service but his revenue in take is rather off considering …by his own admission – that his label grew from infancy til what it is valued at today by having The Church on the label….
        That’s HEAVYWEIGHT perks for a new artist just beginning to earn but most chose a LABEL , and when Judge tells them that he has Steve and The Church as his main HEAVYWEIGHT band (s) that practically sells the contract ….at 50% !!!!
        So where is SK n The Churchs marketing fee ???
        Were is their consulting fee ???
        What a un-laughable mess. I managed record stores for a significant period of time in the late 80’s – early 90’s in Chicago ( a major US market) . We promoted The Church exclusively for Arista. I fuckn know what I am talking about …I dealt with every label and rep from across the county. I just spoke to 2 friends still in Retail Music here in the states and they do agree what Judge has offered up about what services he has provided, but NOT at the spit of 50/50 whereas his company was set up to suceed just by having The Church on its small label and be marketable and profitable predetermined upon itself. But its pretty simple – common sense that The Church is the entity and that contract is bad for business and now its damaging to both entities the further this continues…the consumer already has a bad taste in its mouth and that’s a LOSE/LOSE for all involved.
        I have immense faith in SK’s ability to analyze, execute , and finalize the solution to this mess.
        A better business model has been mentioned now by so many different type of people from all over this world. It must be true. It can END this…in all reality its as easy as saying numbers 50/50…= 25/75 %%% , and be continued profitable for all parties and all it takes is negotiation…because the nasty stuff has already streamed back and forth, in front of the very people who are the reason WHY both The Church and Judge are in business to make justifiable incomes in the first place. Yep…Us the fanboys n fangirls….or are we not the ones who pay ALL YOUR BILLS.

        I wish you the very best Steve…get what is required of being TTB !!!

        I played Re:fo all day today as I decorated my inside house for Halloween…my tag holiday. I LOVE this album …hey there us an idea…get that up and going again…it is incredible,marketable, and Peter is brilliant- Ur always spit on- and Tim, he is flawless…Re:Fo 2 coming to ur local stores soon….hehehe….
        I sent u a cool pic to ur other address…K was spooked…she likes spiders but not that big !!!
        Take a look and get a laugh.


  36. avatar
    Once | 7 October 2012 at 3:52 am #

    I love this comment by Mark Nepo: “I ask questions that can never be answered and live like an answer to all that is never asked.”

  37. avatar
    narelle | 7 October 2012 at 4:07 am #

    Sounds very much like you really need to get to the bottom of this and its fair enough that you are spitting chips. There’s nothing more frustrating than questions unanswered, problems unresolved….as they will always rear their ugly head again……and thats the problem….the general public understands your frustration Steve. We all want to encourage creativity/the arts and that in turn ultimately means better ways of giving back to the artists…

    We can also appreciate business is complex. For example, every day we have to watch half the world waste billions of tons of food while the other half are starving to death…all in the name of business….but that doesn’t make it right.

    as they say…a work in progress…hope it gets sorted quickly Steve

  38. avatar
    Kclone | 7 October 2012 at 4:30 am #

    Whatever you do Steve, I will support. The Church are absolutely incredible. I have brought people to Church shows that have never seen the band before and they have left blown away. So yeah it would suck if the Church can’t continue. With that said, if your situation is not healthy, then I understand you have to do what you have to do. Good Luck Steve.

  39. avatar
    Jesiah6 | 7 October 2012 at 6:04 am #

    Steve, I’m with you in whatever decision you make.
    It makes me sad to know my favorite band will be no more, but
    you have to do what’s best for you and I’ll be a fan either way.

  40. avatar
    Steven Krut | 7 October 2012 at 7:36 am #

    I hope you won’t burn any bridges to your band mates. A band that breaks up can always reform if conditions get better. It’s not like any of you have another legendary rock band to go play in.

  41. avatar
    Bernadette Keys | 7 October 2012 at 7:44 am #

    Really really sad about the Church. Bloody Hell its like if the stones broke up.

    You are one hot- head but I do know you are honest and wouldn’t go on like this with false accusation.

    Have you started the book?

    the comment by berbo was me- pushed wrong button.

    seeya in melb

  42. avatar
    Sylvie | 7 October 2012 at 8:40 am #

    Although the situation is a terrible mess, perhaps this is the impetus for you Steve to finally step out on your own completely. It is unfortunate that a potential split had to come about because of money , or lack thereof as the case may be. Certainly, the band were still very creative which is a rarity for a band of such vintage as most are content to rest on their laurels and flog the greatest hits dead horse. That has never been the case with the Church. Perhaps the freedom of not having to deal with all myriad and complex pitfalls of band finance will allow you even more creative space to pursue your artistic goals. You’ve had so many years of anxiety, uncertainty and frustrations with record labels that perhaps the Curch “brand” has forever been tainted for you with heavy corporate bad vibes. My hope is that the situation can be resolved amicably and without any rancour between yourself and the other members of the band. However, I’m confident you will bounce back from this stronger and more creative than ever. If the Auckland gig in December is to be the last, then I’m privileged (and saddened as well) to be witness to such a momentous event.

    • avatar
      mitch | 7 October 2012 at 11:49 am #

      Sadly what makes you think a solo career will return any more money than a band one?
      The reality is the world’s attitude to music is in a bad state right now. Recorded music has been devalued to the point of nothing for a large proportion of the population, and it’s worse for niche artists like Steve and the Church.
      I doubt Judge is raking in the cash, he’s merely ticking over, and however much any artist might want there to be a fair career for them and their back catalogue that doesn’t make it so. As twatish as Mr Judge might seem he did make some clear points. It was a mechanical royalties statement, ie only part of the payment system for this period, the last album was released 4 years ago, there has been no promotion, touring anything in the recent past for the band and most people already have these discs. How many discs do the band expect to sell under those conditions?
      Mechanicals from cd sales on old catalogue is not where most of the money is made in legacy catalogues, it’s through sync rights. getting your music in films and adverts. If we’re all about honesty and transparency lets have the figures for the other channels of income, let’s not have the simplified version, it’s only telling part of the story and making people go off half cocked.
      Steve should stop making music with the church if that’s what he really wants to do, that will be his loss as well as ours, but be transparent and clear in your motives for that. There is not just one guilty party here. It’s audiences who try not to pay what it costs to maintain a band, it’s an industry who makes sure it gets paid properly and first and keeps the band as the last to eat in the food chain, it’s the band who blame everyone else when things aren’t the same as they used to be 15 – 20 years ago, without acknowledging the many aspects of the problem. There’s a lot of blame to go around. Be in the Church for the right reasons, because they’re a brilliant bunch of people to create music with and that is a rewarding experience for the band members first and foremost.

  43. avatar
    Once | 7 October 2012 at 8:57 am #

    Ya know what pissed me off the most about the S Judge article? This statement:

    “As anyone who knows, listens or simply follows his day to day interactions on his social media outlets, Steve is a very passionate, emotional and creatively gifted musician and human being and will say what’s on his mind for the world to hear and often make knee-jerk reactions to anything going on in his life and the world around him and we know he has a legion of loyal follows to hang on every single world.”

    Yep, that’s right, SK is a fucking reactionary PSYCHO (who should really be on FOX TV!!!) and ANYTHING HE SAYS (I’m drinkin’ the koolaide, folks!)is FUCKING GOSPEL!

    FUCK YOU, S “Judge”. Oxymoron of a name guy!

    • avatar
      Once | 7 October 2012 at 9:00 am #

      And! And! “Knee-jerk reactions”???? Isn’t that called – fucking honesty???


      • avatar
        Once | 7 October 2012 at 9:06 am #

        Sorry, I am perhaps having a “knee-jerk” reaction.

        But – what if no one ever did???

        • avatar
          BROKEN TOYS AND HEROS | 7 October 2012 at 10:12 am #

          Sing It Loud D-Grl !!!


          • avatar
            Once | 8 October 2012 at 3:32 am #

            It just makes me so mad! Like we’re these mindless followers! Ok, so generally I do agree with Steve’s philosphies and writings (and I find him attractive in many ways, not just physically, he has an intensity that is fuckin’ smouldering)…but sometimes, even I am like, “REALLY, STEVE?!”

            I can’t think of an occasion right now where I felt that way, but I am certainly not part of a fuckin’ LEGION!

            It’s just called RESPECT!!

            Ok, I’ve finished ranting now. Where’s my SK Koolaide gone?

  44. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 October 2012 at 10:01 am #

    (i’m currently working w/an editor re pub’g something) mentioned this to her today w/out using anyone’s name/identity – her response was: the guy that’s ripping off clients needs a lawsuit slapped on him and then do a document request (formal “discovery”) – she’s been in the biz a long time and said this is quite typical and as we discussed further [she] informed almost always they settle without going through further legal because: along with “his books/accountings”/biz records, part of that request for documents is also his IRS filings (since he’s done biz w/you at least) – she said bottom dollar (I like that term she uses – hadn’t heard it for awhile)… is they all “list” all of their biz expenses (that they’ve already reimbursed themselves for before paying their clients, so it is illegal to also claim as an expense on taxes – they were reimbursed already/have no expenses) on their tax filings too – and that is a big no-no! so, in her view, that is the quickest way to get him to belly up and agree to pay you, the band, and likely all his other clients if they catch wind of your actions/which they will – he’s probably using the same biz model w/the rest of his clients – anyway, if not and that/those documents surface in any court proceeding and he has done as she suspects, he’d be audited until he’s been dead a hundred years. AND he is not a large corporation so the IRS knows it won’t have to fight corp attorneys for years and years – so he would be a prime target for them to go after. (she told me stories of unbelievable proportions!) anyway, it’s hardball, I guess – but as she explained 90 percent (especially those with accounting degrees) do screw w/the IRS/don’t file properly – and the dueling docs: those he supplies clients w/vs those he files at tax-time will be the argument he can’t expain.

    good luck (and there’s no reason to post this – just info to pass along)

    0h – and apparently (it’s in the news she informed so I’m not blowing anything passing this along…) James Taylor is having to sue to get his royalties too… and rightfully so!

  45. avatar
    Songbird | 7 October 2012 at 10:17 am #

    Hoping these waves settle softly. Here are some thoughts on Friday’s gig in Canberra. A lot of fun, and food for thought.

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 7 October 2012 at 12:52 pm #

      dear songbird. i loved your review. it made me a bit misty. i am so relieved you guys enjoyed my night in the bookshop. love to all canberrans! sk

  46. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 October 2012 at 11:00 am #

    I saw Marty play in Melbourne in March and I’m very sad to say that his flame was snuffed. Gone was his trademark passion, wit and joie de vivre and seeping from him instead was exhaustion, bitterness, curmudgeonliness and a certain stinginess of spirit. I’m not sure how his transformation is relevant to all this current palaver but I’m very sure it is.

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 7 October 2012 at 12:53 pm #

      im sorry to hear this. ive seen marty do a show in stockholm that lasted 3 hours and he was fucking brilliant!
      time and the biz take their toll, i’m afraid

      • avatar
        Anonymous | 7 October 2012 at 1:21 pm #

        I was left feeling utterly depressed by the experience, so it’s nice to hear that it might’ve been an aberration rather than an ineluctable slide…

    • avatar
      Steven Krut | 7 October 2012 at 2:17 pm #

      Everyone has an off night.

  47. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 October 2012 at 11:03 am #

    Post-script to the Marty comment, write that book Steve, WRITE IT! You think you can’t do a better job than Mr Cummings’ “Will It Be Funny Tomorrow Billy?” (which was rather good). In absolutely all seriousness, I think it would be a huge seller.

  48. avatar
    Sador | 7 October 2012 at 11:04 am #

    Everything has a shelf life and an expiration date, even what’s probably the greatest band in the world.

    You are still a living, breathing person, and there is no script. So just do what you think is right, and miracles will continue to happen.

  49. avatar
    GJM | 7 October 2012 at 11:30 am #

    Hi Steve, really sad about this. I’ve been (almost) with you since hearing UM as an 8 year old. This tears me up.

    But I understand where you’re coming from. Pharaoh, indeed.

    Get Koppes to sell a few of his vintage guitars, do whatever you need to do, buy the rights to your music and then DIY from here on. Fuck SM. It’s the only way.

    I mean, if you asked every hardcore Church fan to donate $10 via PayPal… you could probably do it.

    Keep us informed!!


  50. avatar
    Galamor the Wizard | 7 October 2012 at 11:51 am #

    I’ll start by saying I’m selfish.
    I would hate to see the Church broken up. I’ve been a fan of you guys since seeing you on Countdown ALL those years ago. Got all the albums on the day of release, saw most of the tours, play Church stuff everyday etc etc. – I’m a huge fan.
    My life though is very different to you.
    I can’t really imagine all of your frustrations with money. I have a secure, reasonably well paid job with no dependants but a largeish mortgage that I plan to have paid off by before I retire.
    As much as we all hate the idea of money ruling our lives, it’s the thing that allows us to live the lives we want (or think we want).
    Even you recent statements have reinforced the centrality of it in your life.
    Yes, you are an artiste and, like me, hate the idea of people thinking only about money money money but you have to keep an eye on it even if you hold it at a distance.
    Your statement seems more a reaction than a considered response.
    I have seen the breakup of the Church in the past. I’ll never forget your very emotional goodbye at the Enmore back in 91(92) which was on the back of you saying that YOU were the Church. You ARE the main man for sure – but the difference in your stuff (which I usually always love too) and the Church’s demonstrates that your stuff misses the magic something that Marty, Peter and Tim bring.
    I agree with those above who say you WILL need to do it ALL (marketing, T shirts, booking, recording and releasing(via bandcamp or similar))yourselves. Thus, Nirvana IS within your reach if you are to stop this happening again and again.
    I appreciate that America IS however your biggest market and, yeah, it will be a huge blow if you can’t get stuff to people there. However, the use of social media and downloads can get around the need to be paying ANYONE but yourselves anything.
    You are a passionate person, but I think you need to take a very deep breath and let the emotion subside and the cunning cut in before you make a rash decision again.
    It would be ironic that a group like the Church, high on artistic integrity over “sellling out” were to break up over money.

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 7 October 2012 at 12:44 pm #

      i aint really interested in money but i have children and therefore i have to be
      i never said I AM THE CHURCH
      of course i dont and cant sound like the church
      but now thats too bad
      i cannot continue as it is
      the whole story will be revealed one day i guess…at least my side of things
      if you all only knew……

      • avatar
        Anonymous | 9 October 2012 at 2:08 pm #

        I would love to say, y don’t you make it all clear.
        because my words are similiar ‘if u all only knew’ / ‘what’s going on here’. Oh – well, I shall just have to continue to trust in God the Father in all things and hope that what i am about to hand in is acceptable in His sights. anon

  51. avatar
    m slur | 7 October 2012 at 12:27 pm #

    Good on you SK… we are all behind you. why this twat Judge takes 50% of money made from recordings such as Heyday, Starfish etc , which were recorded long ago is beyond belief …. seriously , i’ve been putting our stuff up on Reverbnation … sites like those i hope are the future for us … Fight the good fight though Steve , what is going on is wrong … I wish you well in whatever way you produce and release your music .

  52. avatar
    simon h | 7 October 2012 at 12:48 pm #

    Steve, maybe you should start a band with Bill Ward & Mick Taylor ?

  53. avatar
    Skull_X | 7 October 2012 at 7:14 pm #

    I think it’s sad, weak and disrespectful to rip on Steve on his own blog, especially at a great time of grief he is going through.are you really fans? i think not. fucking trolls

    • avatar
      BROKEN TOYS AND HEROS | 7 October 2012 at 9:30 pm #

      Who in the hell are u addressing ???
      Point out the people, do not say ‘FANS’ –
      because it certainly doesn’t imply me or
      many of us who hav been here everyday ,
      every year – from the very very beginning !!!

      It’s a typo – is it not ???…..Fans ???

      Daz !!!

  54. avatar
    Reality Check | 7 October 2012 at 11:43 pm #

    I feel sorry for the poor baby. As somebody who has REAL problems and still exudes niceness to the world who hasn’t made me rich 😉

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 8 October 2012 at 7:49 am #

      i’d say not getting paid for 30 odd years is a REAL problem, wouldnt you?

      • avatar
        Anonymous | 9 October 2012 at 2:09 pm #

        God pays in kind. In blessings. I would accept these anyday over the physical cash. I accept He provides what we need, for even the birds are fed etc etc. anon

    • avatar
      Anonymous | 8 October 2012 at 10:33 am #

      reality… have you worked a day in your life?
      oh i’m sure you did….
      do you recall the % of tax withheld on your paycheck?
      surely it wasn’t in excess of 80%?
      how quickly your exuded niceness would be extinguished if that was the case 😉
      oh that’s right — writing and playing music isn’t work, is it?

  55. avatar
    Pr0fundus | 8 October 2012 at 10:29 am #

    Steve, i’m a long-time fan, blah blah blah. Reading your blog here and learning of your money issues in the bizness, i feel for you, sincerely. Your work has meant a great deal to me in my life and has given me more than i could ever re-pay. That is the result of a true artist at work in the world. i sympathize and empathize. i have supported The Church best as i could over the years and it angers me too that money i gave to own your albums, etc. did not go to you or your co-members. We are all human and we all live in a money oriented world.
    i have no pearls of wisdom, no help to offer, just gratitude for your art and the soul you have shared. Know you are appreciated. i pray to the Universe that a solution presents itself.
    Your once and always fan, jim

  56. avatar
    Leigh Blackmore | 8 October 2012 at 1:46 pm #

    Dear Steve
    I’m a longtime fan, have met you a coupla times, you may recall a painting of you by Margi Curtis (my partner) that I sent you and you liked.
    This whole thing is horrirble and I am determiend to do whatever I can personally to help you to sort it out. It’s the least ii can do for someone who has given me, and thousands of others, over 30 years of visions, poetry, music, dreams, beauty, insight, great rock n roll, and so much more.
    I have contacted Chris Beal who says he will be selling a DVD interview of you reading poems. I have offered to sell as many as possible of these in Wollongong where I live. Ireally have no money myself but I willtake to the streets and sell these door too door, and anything else that Church merch would entrust to me to sell in the Illawarra and send the money back to the band. If there’s anything else I can do, please let me know, I am at your beck and call, whether it blogging and retweeting about your situation, making calls on your behalf, setting up an Illawarra art echibitoon for you like the one you have in Bondi, whatever, jsut let me know. I ahve a lot of contacts in the arts community down here and can be be persuasive.

    I consider you a friend via your music, even though I’m not as close person
    ally to you as some, and it breaks my heart to know about the way the industry is/has been mistreating you. I want to see justice nd that you get your just rewards for all your incredible work. This is a time for all Church fans and Kilbey fans and friends to rally around and give back some of the energy that you you have put out to the world over the years.

    best wishes and kind regards
    Leigh Blackmore (

  57. avatar
    Alien Skin | 9 October 2012 at 10:11 am #

    Dear Steve, I can absolutely understand your bursting anger & frustration; and you are obviously very aware that your handling by the muzikbiz is quite standard practice, unfortunately.

    I joined the ‘Real Life’ in the 1990s, after the main success the band had in the US, Australia & elsewhere, in the 80s. It’s situation has parallels with yours. David Sterry, singer & main songwriter spent over 10 years in litigation against people like Glen Wheatley etc (barely succesful). Royalty payments from the US also must by now amount to exorbitant sums. Sums of money the band has never received, even after selling millions of vinyl in the 80s. As you correctly write, while thousands of dollars goes into the guarded bank accounts of those business people ostensibly looking after the artist’s interests, the musician is lucky to get away with a measly hundred dollars at times. I do support you in your decision, we are all just human and can only be pushed and abused so much. George

    • avatar
      thetimebeing | 9 October 2012 at 10:16 am #

      same old, same old
      i blame the mechanisms by which the biz works
      it allows the big n little sharks to nibble away at yer $
      and nibble away at yer soul!

  58. avatar
    Jan D | 10 October 2012 at 1:17 am #

    Hi Steve,
    This must be a very difficult decision for all involved and I fully respect it. These last 10 years or so have been so artistically successful for you (both with the Church and your many excellent solo releases) it must be very hard to find that all this creative energy doesn’t pay off in some much earned financial security for you and your family. I makes me angry to see that people who have given me so much pleasure over the years have to struggle to get their just rewards. Unfortunately, you are not alone in this, making great albums that get very good reviews, touring all over the world and coming home with little to show for it (fellow Australians The Drones and Hugo Race spring to mind, but there are many more). I hope you can find a way to get out of this situation in time and that you can come to a somewhat lucrative business solution. The internet has undermined the classic and already deeply flawed model of selling music, but it also offers new ways, and in some ways makes it more personal (as this discussion proves, it would have been unthinkable 20 years ago). Granted, it will be with a much smaller potential audience, but these people ARE willing to pay, handsomely even, for quality music and art in general. The number of artists and bands taking this route is growing steadily. I and all of your fans (for want of a better word) anxiously await, and count on, more fabulous music from you, in any form and through whatever way of distribution. I also (but no doubt vainly) hope you might one day play another gig in Belgium. We saw you here twice and it had a profound effect on my wife and me and many other people present (in an admittedly very small venue, but that made it all the more special). Thank you for that experience. I know that all this doesn’t help you legally or financially right now, but all we can do is buy your music and come to your shows.
    Hang in there,

  59. avatar
    Terry L | 10 October 2012 at 12:35 pm #

    Hello Steve. As nothing more than a longtime American fan who never really dove into the inner workings of the music business, I went to secondmotion’s website today to see if there were any recent releases by the band. Wait, what’s that, a rambling, weary statement by Stephen Judge about you and your frustrations? OK, I come to find your blog site and see in fact that you don’t recant what he clearly states that you did. Now I’m a bit pissed at Mr. Judge at his insincerety along with his greed. Let me assure you Steve that your message is heard and I’m sure that nearly everyone that comes here to converse with you understands.

    Please also understand that we also love the Church and your shared artistic work and expressions. I only regret that I did not meet your band for the first time while you were near Philadelphia a few years back. Much love and future prosperity to you, my friend.

  60. avatar
    Jerry Cornelius | 6 January 2013 at 5:19 am #

    Hi Steve, just heard about you quitting the church, wow! what a shame. But a show of strength and a belief in your own personal credo I think. You and the Church were always above the music biz spivs, not about the money but the song and the muse. I tend to go off a band when it gets a major lable signing, old Indi roots I suppose. You guys were always well above all of that to me and my friends. Trancendental Melodies like Iv’e never heard before, your poetry and music inspired me and a lot of bands. I got a book for crimbo called ‘Electric Eden’ which is all about the Zeitgeist running through Albion to create a musical soundtrack for our times. I grew up listening to you guys and you transported us out of this grey and dreary land to sunlight and a dolphin in disguise. You are an Avatar and you know it. Fuck stephen judge and all that corporate crap. Shine on because you just have to. Just check out your fanbase, e-mails we are all with you dude. You are always welcome to crash here if you need a change of scene or want to record some music (I have a very minimal studio at home)Wimborne, Dorset. Which is a grand town. Much love to you and yours mr.K

  61. avatar
    Maria Belmonte | 13 January 2013 at 12:47 pm #

    I’m so sorry that all of this hasn’t worked out for you. I have to admit that I never knew how all this music stuff worked just content to listen to the albums you put out. Please know that I’m so glad that I got to meet you in person, and have had the pleasure of becoming acquainted with the beauty and art you brought to this world.

  62. avatar
    Lucas Speed | 18 May 2013 at 9:57 pm #

    Hi Steve
    long term fan
    I am another who feels deeply about the music
    and more than a little resentful about the financial.
    I think it echoes what society values today (tripe)
    I recall Robert Fripp went through similar
    (King Crimson got ripped off big time, apparently)
    His response was Discipline Global Mobile records,
    which is meant to serve the artists over and above the executive.
    (you may already know about this, but I wanted to illustrate you are not alone — the feeling is shared by more than just a few)

  63. avatar
    Sean Harper | 5 November 2013 at 2:34 am #

    Whatever happens I thank SK for the ride so far.As a soundtrack to my humble breathing in and out I am grateful and up-staged.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.