Phoebe Bridgers is being sued for defamation by record producer and owner of Sound Space studios Chris Nelson, who claims the singer falsely accused him of abusive behaviour in October last year.
The Los Angeles producer – who is not credited as having worked professionally with Bridgers – is seeking $3.8million (£2.8million) in damages from the singer-songwriter. He claims Bridgers “intentionally used her high-profile public platform on Instagram to publish false and defamatory statements” about Nelson “in order to destroy his reputation”.
Bridgers’ publicists were unable to comment when approached by NME.
As People reports, the lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court, claims that Nelson and his then-girlfriend Emily Bannon “began having consensual sexual encounters” with Bridgers in 2018. According to Nelson, he and Bannon broke up in fall 2019, but Bridgers and Bannon continued their relationship.
It’s alleged that in October 2020, Bridgers wrote on Instagram that she had “witnessed and can personally verify much of the abuse (grooming, stealing, violence) perpetuated by Chris Nelson”. Nelson has categorised these comments as “false and misleading statements”.
Bridgers allegedly pointed her followers to Bannon’s own account, where Bannon accused Nelson of “racially motivated hate crimes” that included “[beating] a young Latinx man to death”. Bannon is also said to have accused Nelson of hacking women’s email accounts and fraudulent activity.
According to Nelson’s lawsuit, these claims were made “maliciously and intentionally” and as part of a “vendetta” that Bridgers and Bannon had against him. Nelson filed a similar lawsuit against Bannon in December last year, also accusing her of defamation.
As Pitchfork notes, Nelson also filed a lawsuit against musician, actress and director Noël Wells in December last year.
Nelson, who worked with Wells on her 2019 debut album ‘It’s So Nice!’, is also accusing the musician of defamation, saying that she told an artist manager with whom Nelson had a working relationship that he had committed “an ‘incredibly predatory move on [her]'” and exhibited “incredibly predatory behavior… toward young females including young female musicians”.