The hip-hop festival bears the same name as the rapper’s 1985 hit single.
LL Cool J has won a trademark lawsuit against the promoters of the hip-hop festival Rock The Bells.
In a report from Billboard, the rapper filed the suit against Guerrilla Union and its founder Chang Weisberg in November last year after trying to settle the matter out of court. A California federal judge ruled on Tuesday that Weisberg has to stop using the title of LL Cool J’s 1985 song “Rock the Bells” without his permission, and is restricted from “manufacturing, transporting, promoting, importing, advertising, publicizing, distributing, offering for sale, or selling any goods or services” under the “Rock the Bells” name.
Weisberg must also “turn over all items bearing the trademark to the rapper for destruction, as well as provide him with account administration over the rockthebells.net website, ‘Rock the Bells’-branded social media handles and any associated email accounts” by May 10.
Through Guerilla Union, Weisberg put on the Rock the Bells hip-hop festival 2004-2013, which featured performances from A Tribe Called Quest, Nas, Lauryn Hill, Erykah Badu, and others. The company stopped putting on the festival because of poor ticket sales and tax issues but continued to use the name on its web domain and social media accounts, even though LL Cool J has successfully petitioned to have their trademarks canceled in 2017.
“Rock the Bells” was the third single off LL Cool J’s debut album, Radio, with the track peaking at No. 17 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.