The Hiro Ballroom in New York, site of many mildly depressing free shows that bloggers flock to like Catholics to a shame party, is among the 26 venues being sued by ASCAP for copyright infringement. Other venues on ASCAP’s hit list include familiar names like the Sanctuary in Atlanta, Nuno’s in Austin, and, uh, the Holiday Inn Southfield in Southfield, Mich. Given that the Tommy Page-playing bar in Tucson got hit for $210 million, Hiro’s bill is likely to involve words like “bazillion.”
Says an ASCAP capo: “ASCAP is simultaneously filing these 26 actions to create awareness among music users and the public that it is a Federal offense to perform copyrighted music without permission. … Taking legal action is always ASCAP’s last step in a long process of contacting, informing and educating business establishments. … With many of these cases, the process has been going on for over a year, so they have had plenty of time to do the right thing.” By which they mean stop letting DJs play music, since that’s what “perform” means here. So bad news, Tegan and Sara fans: when you go see them tomorrow, you might not be able to see someone spin “tampon rock” between sets. Which is ridiculous; surely the Hiro could’ve covered the license costs with the profit on their $8 goddamn beers.
ASCAP Initiates Infringement Actions Against Establishments Performing Copyrighted Music Without Permission [Marketwire]
Hiro Ballroom [Official site]