Ratt’s Warren DeMartini + Bobby Blotzer Battle Over Band’s Name
It looks as though longtime Ratt members Warren DeMartini and Bobby Blotzer are ready to go "round and round" in court. The issue at hand is the usage of the band's moniker moving forward, with Blotzer recently claiming that he has the right to tour using the Ratt name after DeMartini decided not to continue touring and recording under the moniker.
Blotzer announced last month that he was planning on using the Ratt moniker going forward after previously playing shows earlier in the year under the name Bobby Blotzer's Ratt Experience. However, DeMartini who has now filed a lawsuit to stop the drummer from using the name.
According to Blabbermouth, WBS, Inc. was initially formed by Blotzer, DeMartini and original vocalist Stephen Pearcy to oversee the band's management and business operations. However, Pearcy lost his share when he exited the band in 2000. Even though he returned to the group in 2006, Pearcy no longer holds rights to the group's moniker. When the singer exited again in 2014, that left the remaining members to decide how to proceed from there.
Blotzer has expressed his desire to keep the band alive, while DeMartini did not want to tour without Pearcy as the vocalist. Since DeMartini has stepped away from touring, Blotzer felt that gave him ownership of the name moving forward, but the guitarist disagrees.
"This case arises from the drummer of the rock band Ratt trying to take over the band and pawn himself and a cast of substitutes off as the genuine article," said DeMartini's lawsuit, which was filed on Sept. 29 in Los Angeles. "The four remaining members of Ratt currently disagree on whether the band should continue to tour together. Certain of the members, including defendant Blotzer, have toured with substitute musicians in 'tribute' bands. There is nothing illegal in touring with a tribute band. Mr. Blotzer, however, has recently voiced his desire to use the name Ratt and promote his tribute band as if it was the actual band."
The guitarist goes on to state in the suit that touring with inferior substitutes would dilute the value of the band and damage its credibility in the future. According to reports, Blotzer's attorney informed DeMartini that since he no longer wished to tour or record, his shares would be "immediately [converted] into non-voting shares," though he would still receive dividends.
DeMartini is seeking damages and attorneys' fees and is also requesting "a temporary restraining order and preliminary and permanent injunctions restraining and enjoining" Blotzer and others from taking any action in the name of WBS or Ratt.
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