Bosses at energy drinks firm Monster Beverage Corp. have vowed to appeal a court ruling ordering them to pay the Beastie Boys $1.7 million (£1.06 million) for copyright infringement. A jury at Manhattan federal court in New York ruled against the defendants on Friday (06Jun14) after an eight-day trial, during which they admitted to using the band's music, including hits Sabotage and Make Some Noise, in a 2012 online video tribute to late band member Adam 'MCA' Yauch without permission.
Monster Beverage's attorney, Reid Kahn, claimed his clients incorrectly thought they had the authority to use the tracks and urged jurors to award the rappers no more than $125,000 (£78,000), as the Beastie Boys' demands for at least $2 million (£1.2 million) in damages were "contrary to common sense".
He is now planning to challenge the judgement on his clients' behalf.
A statement released following Friday's loss reads: "Although Monster Energy has great respect for the verdict of the jury, we strongly disagree with it. We will make an application to the Court to set aside the verdict and we intend to file an appeal.
"From the inception, Monster Energy has been willing to resolve this matter in a fair and equitable manner and we will continue to make additional efforts to reach a just resolution of this dispute."
Surviving Beastie Boys Michael 'Mike D' Diamond and Adam 'Ad-Rock' Horovitz each took the stand during the trial and insisted they would never have allowed their songs to be used by Monster Beverage Corp. as they had promised their late pal that they would fight any commercial exploitation of the band's music.
The Beastie Boys have been awarded $1.7 million (£1.06 million) in damages for copyright infringement. The hip-hop group's lawyer, Kevin Puvalowski, had been seeking at least $2 million (£1.2 million) in compensation from bosses at Monster Beverage Corp., after they admitted to using the rappers' songs without permission in a 2012 online video tribute to late band member Adam 'MCA' Yauch.
The defendant's attorney, Reid Kahn, claimed his clients incorrectly thought they had the authority to use the music, which included hits Sabotage and Make Some Noise, and on Wednesday (04Jun14) asked jurors at New York's Manhattan federal court to award the band no more than $125,000 (£78,000), as the Beastie Boys' demands were "contrary to common sense".
However, the jurors sided with the legendary rap stars when they delivered their verdict on Thursday (05Jun14).
The decision wrapped up an eight-day trial, during which surviving members Michael 'Mike D' Diamond and Adam 'Ad-Rock' Horovitz took the stand to give evidence and revealed they had promised their late bandmate that they would fight any commercial exploitation of the band's music.
A lawyer representing the Beastie Boys has urged jurors overseeing his clients' copyright infringement trial to award the band at least $2 million (GBP1.2 million) in damages. In his closing arguments on Wednesday (04Jun14), Kevin Puvalowski stated that bosses at Monster Beverage Corp's use of the trio's songs without a license in an online video was "absolutely egregious".
Bandmates Michael 'Mike D' Diamond and Adam 'Ad-Rock' Horovitz, who previously testified in the case, were spectators in the Manhattan courtroom as Puvalowski told jurors Monster bosses had hoped to benefit from how "cool" his clients' had become.
The 2012 video appeared as a tribute to late band member Adam 'MCA' Yauch, but it failed to impress the Beastie Boys, who are very protective of how and where their music is used.
Monster's lawyer Reid Kahn acknowledged his clients had infringed the Beastie Boys' copyrights, but insisted they incorrectly thought they had permission to use the music.
Kahn told the court that the band's demands for damages were "contrary to common sense", and asked jurors to award the band no more than $125,000 (GBP78,000).
The surviving members of the Beastie Boys have vowed not to record new music under the group's name after making a promise to late rapper Adam 'Mca' Yauch before his death in 2012. The hip-hop trio has not released any new material since 2011 album Hot Sauce Committee Part Two, and Michael 'Mike D' Diamond reveals fans won't be hearing anything else from the Beastie Boys now that co-founder Yauch is no longer alive.
He revealed the news during a New York court hearing in the band's ongoing copyright infringement battle against the bosses of Monster Beverage Corp, who stand accused of using five of the band's tracks in a promotional video without permission. During his testimony on Friday (30May14), Diamond admitted he and Adam 'Ad-Rock' Horovitz had made a vow with Yauch to prevent any new music being released without each member's input.
Testifying at Manhattan Federal Court, the Sabotage hitmaker said, "We have not been able to tour since MCA, Adam Yauch, died. We can't make new music." Diamond returned to the witness stand on Monday (02Jun14), when defence lawyer Dana Susman attempted to depict the band as hypocrites after the rapper claimed they had turned down "a lot of money" after producers behind Arnold Schwarzenegger's recent film Sabotage asked them for permission to use their 1994 song of the same name.
Diamond revealed they had rejected the offer because they "weren't fans of Mr. Schwarzenegger's recent... work", but Susman called the rapper out and suggested they had subsequently backtracked as their song was used as the action man's walk on music during a recent appearance on America's The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.
Susman alleged the band had received a fee of $600 (£375) in exchange for allowing a snippet of the track to be used, but Diamond insisted he had no knowledge of the deal and claimed any agreement would have been because they are "fans of that show", reports the New York Daily News. The Beastie Boys had previously performed on Fallon's previous programme, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, prior to Yauch's death.
Entertainment lawyer Donald S. Engel has died at the age of 84. Engel passed away on 15 January (14) in Redwood City, California from complications of leukaemia, according to the New York Times.
He began his career in the 1960s after serving time in the U.S. Army and graduating from New York University Law School.
Throughout his career, Engel represented some of the biggest names in Hollywood and music.
He famously helped Olivia Newton-John score a legal battle in the 1970s against bosses at MCA Records, who had sued her over contract issues.
In 2001, he represented the Dixie Chicks in a lawsuit against executives at Sony over royalty payments.
His other famous clients included Donna Summer, Robert Wagner, Frank Sinatra, Cher and Farrah Fawcett.
Filmmaker Spike Jonze once helped the Beastie Boys write a movie script inspired by the hip-hop trio's music video for 1994 hit Sabotage. The Being John Malkovich director took charge of the rappers' hilarious promo for Sabotage, which served as an homage to, and parody of, hit 1970s crime dramas such as Hawaii Five-O and Starsky and Hutch, but once the video wrapped, they decided to expand the idea into a big screen project, too.
Jonze claims the unreleased script centred around one of the late Adam 'MCA' Yauch's wacky characters, his filmmaker alter ego Nathanial Hornblower, while he also planned to portray Sir Stewart Wallace, another figure from the Sabotage video, in the movie, reports Spin.com.
He says, "The four of us wrote a script together. It was called We Can Do This because... it was so surreal and out there... It just would've been ridiculous and fun... There were no 1970s cops in it, but it was definitely in the same spirit."
Yauch's bandmates also featured in the script, with Michael 'Mike D' Diamond set to bring his country singer persona, Country Mike, to life on the big screen.
And Jonze reveals the songs Diamond recorded for his album Country Mike's Greatest Hits, which he gifted to family and friends for Christmas in 2000, were actually intended for We Can Do This.
He adds, "It was about Hornblower. Mike played a country star - those songs we wrote for the movie, actually. Adam Horovitz played this kid, Nino Vincenzi, who lived on Roosevelt Island (in New York) with his dad who was a mechanic, and (he) was a little bit (like) John Travolta (in) Saturday Night Fever... He had all these dreams and aspirations, but he was awkward and couldn't dance. So he didn't even have that going for him.
"But yeah, I forget all the different characters but... it would have been funny."
Yauch died of cancer in May, 2012.
Country music legend George Strait has signed a new five-album record deal at 61. The singer/songwriter announced his new MCA Nashville deal at a gala honouring his 60 number one singles earlier this week (beg26Aug13).
Strait has recorded all 40 of his studio albums with MCA and says, "I've had a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to a whole lot more."
Meanwhile, the Give It All We Got Tonight singer has also extended Cowboy Rides Away farewell tour, which kicked off in January (13) and will now continue into next year (14). New dates will be announced in the coming weeks.
Country music star Garth Brooks has paid tribute to the mogul who helped launch his career following his death on Tuesday (09Jul13). Jim Foglesong was 90 when he passed away at a Nashville, Tennessee hospital after a brief illness, and now Brooks has spoken out to express his condolences.
In a statement to the Associated Press, Brooks writes, "Today, the music industry lost its greatest diplomat for kindness, tolerance, faith, and sincerity. But do not weep for Jim, I have never met a man with a stronger faith, anyone who knew Jim knows where he is now. Instead, weep for those of us who are left here without him... truly, a great, great man."
Born in West Virginia, Foglesong began work as a session musician in New York before helping bosses launch Epic Records and moving to Nashville.
He made his mark in the 1970s as the head of ABC/Dot Records, where he gave Don Williams, Barbara Mandrell and The Oak Ridge Boys their big breaks.
When MCA purchased the ABC labels in 1979, Foglesong signed Strait, Reba McEntire and Lee Greenwood, and signed signed Brooks as the boss at Capitol Records in the mid-1980s.
After retiring from the business, he taught at Vanderbilt University's Blair School of Music, where Dierks Bentley was one of his students.
The star was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2004.
Late Beastie Boy Adam 'Mca' Yauch is set to be honoured with a special tribute at the 2013 Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival in his native New York. The rapper lost his battle with cancer on 4 May, 2012, aged 47, and organisers of the annual music event reveal they wanted to put together a show to salute his memory last summer (12) - but couldn't pull it off in time.
Wes Jackson, executive director of the Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival, says, "We reached out to (bandmate) Ad Rock right after MCA passed last year and asked if there was anything we could do to help celebrate the life of his brother.
"It was so soon that we were hesitant to even reach out. We wanted to give them space and time. We did speak to Cey Adams (longtime Beastie Boys collaborator) and tried to put something together but the timing wasn't right. We couldn't go another year without taking time out to honour what MCA did for our culture and our music."
Jackson has yet to reveals specific details of the tribute, but plans to hold a moment of silence in Yauch's memory.
The ninth annual festival will feature headline sets from Redman, EPMD and Pusha T and will take place from 10 to 13 July (13).
News of the tribute emerges two weeks after a park in Yauch's old Brooklyn Heights neighbourhood was renamed in the star's honour.
This week thousands of people chose to remember Adam "MCA" Yauch by rocking out his music once again. In the days since Yauch's lost his battle with cancer, Beastie Boys' album sales have skyrocketed, putting seven of their albums on the Billboard Hot 200.
Licensed to Ill, the group's 1986 debut, was the first rap album to top the Billboard charts and now it's cracked the top 20 at number 18. Other albums back on the charts include Solid Gold Hits at 51, Paul's Boutique at 56, Hot Sauce Committee Part Two at 107, Ill Communication at 109, Check Your Head at 124 and Beastie Boys Anthology: The Sounds of Science at 141. Overall, Beastie Boys' album sales increased 1,235% in the last week, with 55,000 albums sold.
Emotional Adam Yauch Tribute at Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Growing Up Beastie: Remembering Adam Yauch
Beastie Boys' Adam Yauch Dies at 47