Sharon Isaak
April 02, 1993 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Red Hot Chili Peppers urged folks to ”Give It Away” in 1991’s big hit, but one of the group’s early members feels the Chilis haven’t followed their own advice. Jack Sherman, a guitarist with the band from 1983 to 1985, has filed a breach-of-contract suit for an unspecified amount against the Chilis for back royalties and damages. Sherman claims he was physically and verbally abused by lead singer Anthony Kiedis and bass player Flea (Michael Balzary). When Sherman was canned in 1985, according to the suit, the two ran into his house giggling and said, ”You’re out of the band, bye.” As to why Sherman waited eight years to file a suit, his lawyer explains, ”Sometimes you don’t know you’ve been damaged until later.” The Chilis won’t comment on the lawsuit, but a Warner Bros. Records spokeswoman notes, ”Until the band became successful, he had no complaints.”

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