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Cleveland Musician Secures Trademark For His Coronavirus Band

While the COVID-19 pandemic has caught the attention of scientists and government officials around the world, the global disease also struck a chord with a Tri-C music business student. He joins a long tradition of making music out of maladies.

In a musical genre often pre-occupied with darkness and doom, it’s not surprising that a number of metal rockers have health issues - at least in their band names, like Anthrax, Leprosy, Jungle Rot, Pestilence and Cleveland's own Black Death, widely considered to be the first Black heavy metal band.

Pioneering Cleveland metal band 'Black Death' [Black Death]

One of the latest was ripped right from the headlines and trademarked by Clevelander Harley Ganiere: The Coronavirus Band.

“I think the first time I heard it was back in November, and I was like, ‘Oh, that's a cool word,’” said Ganiere. “And I started hearing it all the time, mentioned throughout the beginning of January, where I knew I needed to trademark this before someone else takes it.”

Earlier this year, Ganiere enrolled in the Recording Arts and Technology program at Cuyahoga Community College. Over the past few months, he’s studied everything from recording techniques to the business side of running a band. When he filed with the web domain registrar GoDaddy to establish a trademark for his band name, he got some unexpected pushback.

“About a week afterwards, I got a email saying that I have been refunded,” he said. “I go on to Coronavirus.com, and I see that it's owned by the World Health Organization (WHO). Apparently, any dot-com can be seized by governments. It's just not worth the legal hassle, so I ended up getting another domain, which is Coronavirus.band.”

Ganiere suspects WHO was attempting to lock-up all names associated with the pandemic, in order to thwart any attempts to spread false information.                                                        

Now that he's got the band name locked down, Harley Garnier is in the process of actually putting the group together and laying down some music tracks. He said he wants to book a tour of bars and clubs around the post-industrial landscape of the Midwest. The music business major figures it ought to be a good market for a band named after a disease.

Logo for Harley Ganiere's band [Harley Ganiere]

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