The estate of Jimi Hendrix has won a major court ruling allowing it to crack down on companies selling unauthorized products bearing the Hendrix name or likeness.
The United States District Court for the Western District of Washington (state) has granted Experience Hendrix LLC, the family-own company that presides over all things Hendrix, a permanent injunction against Andrew Pitsicalis, who it sued in 2009 to prevent from using registered Hendrix trademarks for products such as coffee and vodka, among others.
In a statement Experience Hendrix says that, "These actions are in keeping with Al Hendrix's (Jimi's father) vision of his son's legacy...Ill-conceived schemes that infringe upon the trademarks established by 'Al' Hendrix and the family company will not be tolerated."
In a separate statement, Experience Hendrix chief Janie Hendrix notes that, "To say that we are elated by this decision would be an understatement. This is an amazing victory. Each time we face a legal issue that challenges our ability to effectively represent and protect Jimi's legacy, we put on our battle gear because we're fighting for something larger than life. Jimi isn't here, so we fight for him. The Permanent Injunction not only confirms our company's rights but also serves notice to those who would disrespect the mission that my father undertook when he founded our company...It's a responsibility we take very seriously. This injunction gives us more strength to ensure that the excellence of the artistry of Jim Hendrix will not easily be watered down, misused, or desecrated."
Experience Hendrix is gearing up for the August 28 release of Freedom: Jimi Hendrix Experience Atlanta Pop Festival on CD and DVD from a July 4, 1970 performance. Jimi Hendrix: Electric Church, a documentary about the performance, debuts at 9 p.m. ET September 4 on Showtime and will be released October 30 on DVD and Blu-ray.
Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.