Here’s a feud few people, if any, saw coming. Yet again, it’s 2020 and anything can happen.
It all began when Murray used the song in a commercial for his William Murray line of golf clothing. As The Doobie Brothers’ legal team got word of this, they were obliged to send a cease and desist letter. While Murray and his legal team will likely take any allegations like this seriously, The Doobie Brothers’ team decided to craft a letter that spoke Murray’s language rather than the legal language.
“Dear Mr. Murray,” the letter begins.
“We’re writing on behalf of our clients, the Doobie Brothers. The Doobie Brothers perform and recorded the song 'Listen to the Music,' which Tom Johnston of the Doobie Brothers wrote. It’s a fine song. I know you agree because you keep using it in ads for your Zero Hucks Given golf shirts. However, given that you haven’t paid to use it, maybe you should change the company name to ‘Zero Bucks Given.’”
“We understand that you’re running other ads using music from other of our clients. It seems like the only person who uses our clients’ music without permission more than you do is Donald Trump,” the letter continues.
The second to last paragraph of the letter is likely one of the funniest pieces of legal writing to date and slams Murray for some of his past film work.
“This is the part where I’m supposed to cite the United States Copyright Act, excoriate you for not complying with some subparagraph that I’m too lazy to look up and threaten you with eternal damnation for doing so. But you already earned that with those Garfield movies. And you already know you can’t use music in ads without paying for it.”
Ouch… Bill Murray’s team has yet to issue a response, but here’s hoping it’s just as entertaining as this initial letter.