22 April 2005

Sue the Bastards

Tom Waits
Adamantly anti-commercial artist Tom Waits is contemplating legal action over an ad campaign for GM's Opel car line running in Europe's Scandinavian region that reportedly boasts music and a vocal resembling his own. The singer/songwriter learned of the ads through fans who contacted his record label, Anti-, a division of Epitaph.

"In answer to the many queries I have received: No, I did not do the Opel car commercial currently running on TV in Scandinavia," Waits said in a statement. "I have a long-standing policy against my voice or music being used in commercials and I have lawyers over there investigating my options."

Waits has previously fought several advertisers who have aped his distinctively graveled voice and avant-garde style for commercial purposes. Among past infringers are car manufacturers Audi (Spain) and Lancia (Italy) and snack manufacturer Frito-Lay for a SalsaRio Doritos radio spot in the United States.

"If I stole an Opel, Lancia or Audi, put my name on it and resold it, I'd go to jail. But over there they ask, you say 'no,' and they hire impersonators. They profit from the association and I lose -- time, money, and credibility. What's that about?"


Anonymous said...

what's an Opel?

Sizemore said...

too bad all musicians aren't more like Waits. think of the music we'd have