Big Drink On the Orient Express

Transcribed by Andrew J. Stoker (

The Cure pop group ran up a bar bill of #1,500 to #2,000 in one night on
the Orient Express, the High Court heard yesterday.

The exploit was revealed in a 60-page written statement by ex-Cure founder,
Lol Tolhurst, who is locked in a court battle with the band's star
performer Robert Smith and record company boss, Chris Parry.

A friend of Mr. Smith's since the age of five [aah], Mr. Tolhurst, who with
Mr. Smith was one of the original four members of the band when it started
out in 1977, claims a deal signed in December 1986 gave Mr. Smith and Mr.
Parry an unfair slice of the band's recording profits. Mr. Tolhurst is
seeking to set aside their agreement and asking for an account of what he
is owed.

No figure has been put on his claim which covers as least two hit albums
Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, and Disintegration, but it could run to

Mr. Tolhurst, of Newton Abott Devon, left The Cure in 1989, and now has his
own successful band Presence. He claims he signed the deal which was to his
manifest disadvantage without receiving proper information or advice and
relying on Mr. Smith who had become the active and dominant member of the

Mr. Smith, of Aldwick Bay, Bognor , and Mr. Parry, of London, say that from
1982 Mr. Tolhurst's contribution to the band's activities declined until by
1988 it had become minimal. They also blame his drinking for the situation.
They say the new arrangements were fully explained to him and that because
of his behavior it was inappropriate for him to continue earning more than
its other three members.

Mr. Tolhursts' statement accuses other members of the group of waging a
campaign of malicious practical jokes, including putting a scorpion
skin[!!] in his face flannel.

On May 22, 1986 the band and their wives and girl friends were traveling
to Venice on the Orient Express and were being filmed for The Old Grey
Whistle Test.

As far as I recall the trip was quite pleasant, he says. We all drank a lot
on the train and our bar bill for one night was between #1,500 and #2,000.

His drinking made him become the butt of everyone's jokes and aggression,
he said.

I was drinking very heavily and was the butt of everyone's jokes and
aggression. As a result of the continuous abuse and criticism, I became
very ill and lost over a stone in weight. It is correct that when I became
drunk, I sometimes became aggressive, largely stemmed by the frustrations
which I felt.

It was a vicious circle, I drank for confidence, but later, I lost my
confidence because of the drink or the constant abuse and I became unable
to perform. The other members of the band would constantly play practical
jokes on me. As the days wore on these jokes became more and more

The hearing continues.

Last Revised: Monday, 15-May-2006 15:00:06 CDT

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