SECTION: COURTHOUSE STEPS; Vol. 17; No. 6; Pg. 7
LENGTH: 925 words (excerpted)
CASE CAPTION: Aimee Mann v. UMG Recordings Inc. and Universal Music & Video Distribution Inc.; L.A. Superior Court #BC257680.
CAUSES OF ACTION: Breach of contract, misappropriation of name and likeness, common law unfair competition, violation of federal Lanham Act, violation of Calif. Bus. & Prof. Code § 17200.
COMPLAINT ALLEGATIONS: Plaintiff entered into a recording agreement with The Imago Recording Co. in 1992. Imago assigned its rights to Geffen Records in 1995. Plaintiff and Geffen terminated the agreement in 1999. Geffen was merged into Universal in 2000. Under the agreement, the record company was not allowed to couple master recordings from one record with masters from another record without the plaintiff's consent, nor repackage records without the plaintiff's consent or use the plaintiff's photos, likenesses or biographical material. Universal was also not to exploit masters that were not intended for commercial exploitation. In September 2000, more than a year after the termination of the recording agreement, Universal released a record called "Aimee Mann Ultimate Collection" that coupled songs from different records, songs never intended for commercial exploitation, songs from other record companies and songs from a band in which Mann was not a solo artist. RELIEF SOUGHT: At least $ 2 million.
PLAINTIFF'S COUNSEL: Henry Gradstein and Bruce E. Van Dalsem of Los Angeles' Gradstein, Luskin & Van Dalsem (310-571-1700).