On Tuesday, Burberry filed trade mark infringement proceedings in New York against rapper and producer Burberry Perry, seeking immediate injunctive relief against the artist’s use of any and all associations with the company, including his stage name.
The rapper, whose real name is Perry Moise, adopted Burberry Perry as his stage name and has used the fashion brand’s signature check print and logo to promote his new EP. Released in May, and including a track featuring Kylie Jenner, the EP soon came to the attention of Burberry, who immediately responded with a cease and desist. On failing to receive any response, proceedings were commenced.
In its complaint, Burberry points to the exclusive and continuous use of the Burberry trade marks by the company and its authorised licensees for 160 years.
It also refers to its involvement with a number of music-related activities, including its use of musicians including Elton John, George Ezra and James Bay in advertising campaigns, and its partnership with Apple Music by way of “Burberry’s channel [which] showcases Burberry’s unique collaborations with emerging and iconic artists, featuring performances, songs, and films alongside regular playlists…”. The complaint makes reference to Burberry Acoustic “a platform that provides music and exclusive videos from emerging artists who are carefully selected by Burberry…” These references highlight a concern that the artist’s use of the company’s marks could lead to consumer confusion where “Burberry” is used as a search term on music streaming outlets.
The nature of Burberry Perry’s music has undoubtedly added to Burberry’s consternation. Burberry contends that the music casts a poor light on its company, known as a global luxury brand, whereas the “Defendant’s release of ‘Beautiful Day’ on the ‘Burberry Perry’ album caused a social media firestorm about whether Kylie Jenner rapped Defendant’s lyrics, ‘I wish a f*ck n*gga would, yeah.’ Media and the public-at-large criticized the album, noting Defendant’s extensive use of profanity and autotune.”
Burberry is seeking orders that the artist cease all use of its various trade marks, including its name and check logo.
We will keep you posted.