Philadelphia Bar Sues St. Louis Blues Over Rights to 'Play Gloria' Phrase

Jacks NYB sent cease-and-desist letters to a St. Louis t-shirt company, the Blues and others who have been making money off the phrase

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - It seems all the good feelings from the St. Louis Blues Stanley Cup Championship are fading, because there's now a legal dispute over who owns the phrase "Play Gloria." A bar in Philadelphia has initiated a legal tug-of-war.

The bar, called Jacks NYB, sent cease-and-desist letters to St. Louis t-shirt company Arch Apparel, the Blues and others who have been making money off the phrase, according to Missouri Lawyers Weekly.  The term comes from the  late singer Laura Branigan’s 1982 song "Gloria" which became the victory anthem for St. Louis after Blues players watched an NFL playoff game at Jack's NYB in January. 

KMOX legal analyst Brad Young weighs in: 

"Their argument is, is that because that phrase was first used in the bar then they have a right to use that, an exclusive right to use that phrase," Young says. 

Local Philly fans inside the bar constantly yelled "Play Gloria" at the bar's D.J., then Blues players began to say it their lockerroom after winning games. Now, the phrase can be found on t-shirts, banners and more Stanley Cup memorabilia. 

Young doesn't buy it. For one thing he says, the timing works against them. 

"Had they asserted that while the Blues were in the midsts of their run, that would have generated enormous bad will against that particular bar," Young says. "The problem is that by waiting to assert their alleged rights to this trade name/copyright, then at that point they're allowing their interest to be what's called, diluted."

Missouri Lawyers Weekly says Arch Apparel began production of its t-shirts again after getting some legal advise of its own.

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