Everyone will be famous for 15 minutes. Andy Warhol
Yoko Ono, famed meanie who broke up the Beatles-the most popular band in history-is in the news for suing a singer most of us have never heard of called Lennon Murphy. E!Online has all the details about Yoko Ono going after Lennon Murphy by filing a petition with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board of the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Seems Yoko gave permission for Lennon Murphy to use the name Lennon in 2000, but has now decided it is a bad idea. Lennon Murphy has a wikipedia page and a spot on Myspace, as well as lennononline.com..
A few years ago there was a performance artist that decided to call himself Tabasco. He was a small fish, much like Lennon Murphy, but like Yoko, McIlhenny’s told him to stop using their name in his act. He told them he was not selling hot sauce, so he was not in competition with them. They still demanded he stop using the name Tabasco, which is the name of a state in Mexico and not the sole property of McIlhennys. I never did hear what happened about all of that, but I am guessing McIlhennys won, as they are really serious about anyone using the word Tabasco for anything at all.
Lennon is a dead common name, and it seems to be the woman’s actual name-her mum liked John Lennon-and not something she just uses on stage. But having a real name of McDonald doesn’t give you the right to open a hamburger stand and start selling Big Macs. So Yoko can sue Lennon Murphy if she wants.
The real story here is that all you need to do to get your fifteen minutes of fame is piss off someone famous. I can easily see a dozen no name bands changing their names to Lennon, McCartney, Ringo, or Harrison-no point in limiting the potential media attacks to just one of the Fab Four’s lawyers. How about a Lennon blog? Or a Yoko Ono blog? Or maybe go for broke and have the Tabasco Lennon Band. Lennon Murphy should send Yoko a nice thank you gift for all the free press. Maybe a Tabasco gift basket would do the trick.
Lennononline.com has a lengthy open letter talking about the whole Yoko vs Lennon thing. Maybe Lennon can sue Yoko for something and keep this story going for years in litigation. There must a lawyer out that there that would want to take this case for free, just for the publicity. Where’s Johnnie Cochran when you need him? If the Lennon name fits, Ono must desist. Or something like that.