Oldies groups go to court to challenge ‘truth in music’ law but promoter held in contenpt for using Drfiters name

October 2007


The first legal challenge to one of the seventeen states who have passed the so called ‘Truth in Music’ law has been launched by a music promoter. The law aims to protect heritage acts and stop consumers being ripped off by imposter bands. At the same time a New Jersey judge has found the same music promoter in contempt of court for continuing to use the name of a famous oldies group, the Drifters, in defiance of an 8 year old court order. US District Judge Dickinson R. Debevoise termed Larry Marshak’s promotion of an offshoot of The Drifters titled The Elsbeary Hobbs Drifters as “an elaborate shell game.” Judge Debevoise held that Marshak, his relatives and business associates violated a 1999 injunction banning the use of the Drifters name “or any other name that would be confusingly similar to the Drifters.” Marshak has been in dispute with Faye Treadwell, wife of the former Drifter’s manager George Treadwell and owner of the Drfiters trade mark for over thirty years. It is companies linked to Marshak who have launched the challenge against state Attorney General Anne Milgram. Marshak and his associates, including his wife and sister-in-law, have promoted shows involving The Platters, The Elsbeary Hobbs Drifters, and the Cornell Gunter Coasters in New Jersey and elsewhere. Elsbeary Hobbs and Cornell Gunter, who are both deceased, sang with the groups in the 1950s and 60s. However, none of the three groups named in the lawsuits currently feature any original members

ARTICLE at http://www.newsday.com/news/local/wire/newjersey/ny-bc-nj–musiclawchallenge0908sep08,0,4985509.story


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