Kenny G tries to end spousal support as 'touring opportunities dry up'
Grammy award-winning saxophonist Kenny G, 66, pushes to terminate spousal support after paying $3.9 million over nine years as ‘touring opportunities dry up and income declines’
- Kenny G, 66, divorced his second wife Lyndie in 2013, after 21 years of marriage: the couple have two adult sons, Max and Noah
- In September 2021 he filed court documents seeking an end to the $40,000-a-month spousal support payments agreed in their divorce
- On Friday the musician’s lawyers served Lyndie’s lawyers with court documents seeking to resolve his request, after months of wrangling about tax returns
Lawyers for Grammy-winning musician Kenny G on Friday filed legal documents demanding that his ex-wife agree to end the $40,000-a-month he has been paying her, with the saxophonist arguing he can no longer afford it.
The 66-year-old musician, born in Seattle as Kenneth Gorelick, was married to Lyndie Benson for 21 years.
The couple divorced in 2013 and he agreed to pay her the hefty monthly fee.
But in September 2021 he filed documents arguing he could no longer keep sending her money, and on Friday, with the case unresolved, his lawyers served Benson’s attorneys.
‘Kenny, who is now 65 years old, has been paying spousal support to Lyndie for more than 9 years,’ the original documents state.
Kenny G is pictured in July 2021 on his bike in his Malibu neighborhood. He is fighting to end spousal support, arguing that he can no longer afford it
The musician and his wife Lyndie Benson are seen at home in June 1992
‘Kenny is a Grammy award winning saxophonist with a long successful career and more than 15 albums.
‘However, as explained in the accompanying declaration of Kenny, for the last 2-3 years Kenny’s touring opportunities, where he earns the most income, have not only declined but his percentage of earnings from the tours have also declined.
‘Kenny’s income has substantially declined steadily since 2018.’
His legal team – headed by high-profile divorce attorney Laura Wasser – did not specify how much the musician was worth.
At the time of his divorce, he was widely reported to be worth $50 million.
He has paid his ex-wife $3.9 million since 2013, his lawyers noted.
‘Lyndie is 57 years old, and, as far as Kenny knows, in good health’ his lawyers wrote in their initial complaint.
‘Lyndie has refused to become fully self-supporting for almost 10 years.
‘Kenny should not have to continue to bear the burden of her refusal to do so.’
Kenny G is seen in July 2021 playing at Charles Krug Winery presented by The Blue Note, in Napa Valley. He claims he no longer tours regularly
Kenny G and Michael Bolton are seen on stage in Chicago in August 1992
The Seattle-born musician cycles near his Malibu home in July 2021
His lawyers note that she has launched a clothing company, Bleusalt, but refused to hand over the financial documentation related to the company.
In May 2022, Forbes interviewed her and described it as a ‘thriving fashion label’ of ‘Malibu-inspired chic essentials’.
She told the magazine: ‘I have always been obsessed with beautiful cashmere and head to toe outfits from Loro Piana and Bamford. Luxurious clothing that looked good on the beach for a bonfire and just as good when you were at Nobu for dinner.
‘So once I found the fabric and perfected it for Bleusalt, the inspiration was already fully realized in my daily life and aesthetic.’
He is seeking to end the payments entirely, or substantially reduce them.
He is also asking the court to end the requirement that he maintain payments of a life support policy, which was guaranteed under the divorce.
Kenny G is the best-selling instrumental artist ever, and next month is performing in Las Vegas.
With 11 platinum albums and eight others that have reached multi-platinum status, Kenny G is one of the most successful artists, according to the Recording Industry Association of America.
He appeared on the soundtrack for The SpongeBob Movie, and has collaborated with Kanye West and Katy Perry.
In 2021, HBO made a documentary of his life and music, Listening to Kenny G.
Kenny G, wife Lyndie Benson and sons Max and Noah
The following year, he appeared in a Super Bowl advert for the beer Busch Light – his second Super Bowl ad, after appearing for Audi in 2011.
In 2022, he told Forbes he didn’t mind being mocked for being everywhere.
‘If I’m the butt of the joke, if it’s funny, I love it,’ he says, recalling how Wayne’s World film had a dentist swap out Novocaine for his music, how in South Park his music ‘makes everyone crap their pants,’ or how Saturday Night Live made fun of him for a duet he did with Frank Sinatra.
‘It doesn’t bother me because it’s truly funny.’
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