Ask A Local Band

Ask a Local Band

King's Dream Speech Causes Copyright Nightmare When is the last time you have heard Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech? For most of us, it has been a very long time. The famous speech is a fiercely guarded and copyrighted work. The likes of CBS, USA Today, and even PBS have been ordered by courts not only…

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The Blurred Lines

The Blurred Lines

The Blurred Lines Between Social Media Usage and Intellectual Property Rights  Artist Richard Prince selects photos he finds off of Instagram, makes minor manipulations and blows them up, then displays them in galleries and sells them for profit – all without asking permission from or providing compensation for the photos’ rightful owners. The balance that exists between publicizing one’s art…

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Sampling Music: Even One Second Is TOO Much

Sampling Music: Even One Second is TOO Much

Did you know that sampling even one second of another musician’s work is illegal? Sampling is the act of taking a portion, or sample, of one sound recording and reusing it as an instrument or a sound recording in a different song or piece. Have you ever heard a song and thought it meshed well with what you were creating and…

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The Song Writer Equality Act Of 2015

The Song Writer Equality Act of 2015

Why you should care about The Song Writer Equity Act of 2015 Songwriters have two main sources of revenue to make money from their compositions. They have the right to perform their works publicly and the right to sell reproductions of their songs. Songwriters and composers are not being paid fairly for reproductions of their works due to gaps in…

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David Vs. Goliath – Strange Folk Festival

David vs. Goliath – Strange Folk Festival

Local Arts Festival Founder at Odds with City of O’Fallon, Illinois David versus Goliath, Rocky versus Apollo Creed and now, Autumn Wiggins versus the City of O’Fallon, Illinois. David versus Goliath, Rocky versus Apollo Creed and now, Autumn Wiggins versus the City of O’Fallon, Illinois. Autumn Wiggins, the founder of one of the largest indie craft shows in the area,…

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The Slants Get Into Trademark Trouble

The Slants Get Into Trademark Trouble

The Slants Get Into Trademark Trouble It’s often a smart legal move to safeguard your band’s name, but some names simply cannot be trademarked. Simon Tam, the front man for the Asian-American rock-pop group the Slants, figured that out the hard way after the US Patent and Trademark Office refused to register the name because it was disparaging to Asians.…

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Other Great Music Law Blogs

Other Great Music Law Blogs

Here at the VLAA we run a great blog for artists, particularly musicians, but there are a number of other great music law blogs we would recommend to anyone interested in the subject. The subject of music law and copyright law is very expansive and constantly changing. Those interested in the field must do a great deal of research to…

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Summer Rocks Concert Series

Summer Rocks Concert Series

Summer Rocks Concert Series: Benefit or Burden to the Downtown St. Louis Music Scene? A controversial contract between the City of St. Louis and ICM Partners has the potential to change our city’s cultural and musical landscape for better or worse. A recent contract between the City of St. Louis and ICM Partners, a leading Los Angeles-based talent agency, has…

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Copyright Office Creates Fair Use Database

Copyright Office Creates Fair Use Database

Fair Use Index offers some direction, but using it alone could lead you astray Have you ever wanted to use an image or song for a webpage or other project but were worried about violating copyright laws? Or maybe you’ve felt that someone has violated your copyright by using your work, but you were confused about what actually qualifies as…

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We are a team of volunteer summer associates who believe that the ability to write with confidence, power and purpose is at the heart of being a successful attorney.

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