I have confirmed the NY Mills Phil'armonic Symphony Society Viola Society, as well as other NY State violists are going to fight this:
'Truth in Music' law strikes protective note
BY REID J. EPSTEIN
August 22, 2007
Musical fakers who illegally impersonate groups they are not affiliated with will now face up to $15,000 in fines after Gov. Eliot Spitzer signed the state's Truth in Music law yesterday."We'd like to see good, strong enforcement of it and the attorney general's office has tools to do it now," said the bill's state Senate sponsor, John Flanagan (R-East Northport). "If you go to a New Year's Eve party or you go to one of these tributes, you don't know if it's real or not."The bill, which will go into effect in one month, was prompted by groups representing themselves as doo-wop artists like the Platters, the Coasters and the Drifters. Jon Bauman, "Bowzer" from the group Sha Na Na, advocated for the legislation in New York and other states.Spitzer said the law will help musicians from the past and the future."Music artists work for years to build names for themselves in the entertainment industry," Spitzer said in a statement. "We should not allow others to impersonate their work and profit from that deception." Original band members are increasingly finding themselves squeezed out of profits that are rightfully theirs, said Bauman, whose own band made its name covering doo-wop songs. Bauman is scheduled to perform with his current group, Bowzer's Rock N' Roll Party, at the New York State Fair in Syracuse Sept. 1.The bill's Assembly sponsor, Peter Rivera (D-Bronx), said the law would protect both musicians and fans."Fans want to see the groups they love and should get what they pay for," he said. "In a sense, this also preserves our musical heritage." Suffolk County is considering a similar law, which would impose fines of up to $1,500. The county legislation was sparked by Lenny Cocco of Islip Terrace, who owns the rights to the name and music of his band, Lenny Cocco and the Chimes.
Copyright © 2007, Newsday Inc.