On Friday morning Anita Baker was facing jail time after she refused to sign documents as it related to how her royalties are split with ex-husband, Walter Bridgeforth. Bridgeforth was awarded half of her royalties in a divorce settlement reached in 2007.
Last Wednesday Baker was ordered to sign documents to empower court-appointed music contract expert Howard Hertz to seek information from the record companies on the amount owed to Bridgforth.
That deadline passed and Baker refused to sign the papers again on Thursday. As a result, Judge Lita Masini Popke ordered Baker back in court with the instrument to sign the documents or be jailed. Baker complained about being “muzzled.”
She also told the judge that she hadn’t read let alone signed the documents because she had been crying for two days straight. She also noted that it was the label’s fault, not hers that Bridgeforth had not been paid any royalties. However, it seems Anita has reached an agreement with her ex-husband’s attorney to create a process that eventually will decide how much Walter Bridgforth is owed in music royalties as part of the couple’s divorce settlement.
The AP quotes Baker saying:
“I’m so happy. … I have never been in such a position before. And we don’t intend to ever be in such a position ever again. I just wanna go home, and I’m happy to go home. … As horrific as it could have been, it was lovely to feel supported, though, on the other end.”