May 26, 2024

The time period “jelly roll” was as soon as solely identified for being a candy, sponge cake dessert you’d most likely discover at your grandma’s home. Then got here the musician Jelly Roll, and now the time period is not solely a meals; it is an individual, too. However there is a third jelly roll wanting in on the checklist — a listing they declare they began many years in the past.

See, Jellyroll can be the title of a marriage band from Pennsylvania that claims the Grammy-nominated nation singer beneath the identical stage title however in two phrases has infringed upon its trademark of the moniker.

In a lawsuit filed towards Jelly Roll — whose actual title is Jason DeFord — on April 8, the creator of the Jellyroll band, Kurt L. Titchenell, states his band has been utilizing the title since 1980 however first registered it as a performing musical group with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Workplace in 2010, most just lately renewing the registration in 2019 to final till 2029 on the earliest.

Now Titchenell says DeFord should cease utilizing the title by legislation, claiming his alleged infringement on the band’s trademark has brought on shopper confusion and deception main him to monetary harm and hurt, the swimsuit states.

In line with a Philadelphia marriage ceremony band web site run by Titchenell, Jellyroll began in 1980 as a “group of men who actually loved enjoying music” that quickly took over town’s membership scene. They ultimately began reserving personal occasions, together with “luxurious weddings,” and have become one of many “hottest bands within the Philly space,” the location states.

Annually, the band performs at greater than 120 occasions within the Northeast, however the website states they’ve carried out throughout the nation over time, together with two performances on the White Home at former President George W. Bush and former first girl Laura Bush’s invites. 

Titchenell stresses that the band’s title recognition has performed an element in its success. The swimsuit alleges a seek for Jellyroll on-line would have returned outcomes associated to the band earlier than DeFord got here onto the scene as Jelly Roll. Now, Titchenell claims his group is as many as 18 to twenty references behind the nation singer. 

In February, the plaintiff despatched a cease-and-desist letter to DeFord, whose counsel allegedly “inquired as as to if defendant actually was in competitors with plaintiff,” the swimsuit says. And now that Jelly Roll’s upcoming Superbly Damaged Tour has appearances deliberate within the Northeast, together with Philadelphia, Titchenell says DeFord’s “unapologetic persevering with infringing acts” will trigger additional points, reminiscent of confusion as to which “Jellyroll” shall be at sure occasions.

“Defendant’s unauthorized use of plaintiff’s mark Jelly Roll in interstate commerce, and particularly within the Northeast of the U.S. in reference to dwell musical performances … is inflicting, has already brought on, and can proceed to trigger … precise confusion, mistake, and deception,” the swimsuit states, in search of injunctive reduction towards the nation singer.

DeFord has mentioned in interviews that his stage title stems from a nickname his mother gave him as a baby, telling CBS in January that she nonetheless calls him “Jelly.”

Although he launched his profession beneath the moniker within the early 2000s, Jelly Roll’s stardom did not actually take off till Might 2022, when he obtained his first No. 1 radio hit with the rock track “Useless Man Strolling.” 

In January of 2023, his nation track “Son of a Sinner” went No. 1, and the subsequent month he made historical past by sitting at No. 1 on Billboard’s Rising Artists chart for a twenty fifth week.

Later in 2023, Jelly Roll received New Artist of the Yr on the 2023 CMA Awards and snagged all three CMT Music Awards that he was nominated for. In 2024, he was nominated for finest new artist on the Grammy Awards. 

However his life exterior of music has additionally put him beneath the highlight, notably for a way his life has modified since spending time in jail for aggravated theft and drug dealing (a “troubled previous” that Titchenell says in his lawsuit has additional harmed his picture as Jellyroll).

Earlier this yr, DeFord testified earlier than Congress in help of anti-fentanyl laws and mirrored on how his previous landed him there. 

“I used to be part of the issue. I’m right here now, standing as a person that wishes to be part of the answer,” he mentioned earlier than a Senate committee.

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