Legal Question in Entertainment Law in California

Band Name

My band recently found out that a band in Germany has already used our name

from 1997-2005. They recently broke up. They had 3 independent releases in

europe only and did some extensive touring in euopre. Will this be a problem for

us here in the U.S. if we continue to use the name?

Asked on 11/29/05, 6:57 pm

3 Answers from Attorneys

William Hochberg Law Offices of William Hochberg

Re: Band Name

If none of the original members are touring under the name and there's no ongoing business, there should be no problem. However, if they have any activities (including selling CDs, etc.) they could raise issues if you go to the same territory where they do business. Some examples: blink 182 had to change their name from "blink" after an Irish band came out of the woodwork. Even if a band is no longer active you can have a problem if they were famous at one time. For example, you could not call yourself "The Beatles", even though that band is no longer around, for same reasons stated above.

For more discussion, get in touch through the email: [email protected]

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Answered on 11/29/05, 7:13 pm
Richard Jefferson M.E.T.A.L. LAW GROUP, LLP

Re: Band Name

If what you say is completely true then you have a good case, but I suggest federally trademarking the name. By having a preliminary search done and submitting the trademark application you can better establish your position. I dealt with this frequently when I worked at a major label. Contact me if you would like to file the trademark.

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Answered on 11/29/05, 7:20 pm
Christopher M. Brainard, Esq. C. M. Brainard & Associates - (310) 266-4115

Re: Band Name

Probably not, it appears as though they have abandoned it.

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Answered on 11/29/05, 7:24 pm

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