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CROOKED BAND'S SUCCESS

Dreamed 1996/8/21 by Chris Wayan

I follow the story of a commercially unsuccessful European band. They struggle for years, play small venues. Then a few players break off. Change their name, but they still occasionally use the original name as a variant or subtitle of their new one. They play exactly the same music, music they didn't write, without giving the original band credit. And in a year or less, they become one of the biggest acts on the Continent!

What held the old band back? I suspect it was their name. Would you brag to your friends that you saw the Soggy Diapers? Great songs, but...

Several years later, rich and famous, the ripoff band tells their lawyers to sue the Soggy Diapers (who are still playing in the shadows) for trademark and copyright infringement! For using their own name, for playing songs they wrote!

The evidence is all on the side of the original band of course--so the rich splinter happily tells their lawyers to go FRAME the Diapers: bribe club owners, burn the booking records, forge contracts... whatever it takes. They want absolute ownership of the songs. Songs they didn't write. Songs their old bandmates have generously let them play without a fight. Songs that made them rich.

The sheer scale of their ingratitude and dishonesty blow me away. Isn't there a Chutzpah Award?

NOTES

The Soggy Diapers = I just read an article by a woman who worked for some lawyers in the music industry: "Their pride was remarkable, considering they had less moral maturity than the average toddler."

I also read a piece by Australian camel-rider Robyn Davison, who just crossed the US on a Harley, for a change. She reports "American militarism, sexism, racism and general crassness top even Australia's." Aw, come on, Robyn, you can't top infinity...



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