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Perfume firm seeks access to Jay-Z’s calendar

By | Published on Wednesday 19 September 2018


Plenty of superstar musicians are as much in the perfume business as anything else. With perfume being all about the brand – the often extortionate prices never being justified by the actual work involved in putting some smelly water in a bottle – pop stars are usually quids in whenever they enter into partnerships with perfume makers.

A simple trademark licence and some nominal plugging, and the money just rolls on in. Though please remember to do the nominal plugging. Fragrance company Parlux sued Jay-Z back in 2016 accusing the rapper of failing to meet his commitments to plug the smell in a bottle that it had launched under his brand.

The case continues to rumble through the system, and this week there was a somewhat tetchy hearing as lawyers for Parlux tried to force Jay-Z to hand over his calendar for the years 2013, 2014 and 2015, to prove that he really did have other commitments every time the perfume firm tried to get him to do some promo or to meet to discuss future marketing.

According to Law 360, Jay-Z’s attorney argued that that was too big an ask, and that the calendars could also reveal information to Parlux about his client’s other business ventures. The demand for the calendars was akin to having Jay-Z wear an “electronic bracelet”, the legal man argued, or to making his client submit to something like the “Spanish Inquisition”.

“My family went through the Spanish Inquisition”, judge Charles Ramos responded to the lawyer’s hyperbole, “[and] this is not the Spanish Inquisition”. Nevertheless, Ramos did agree that Parlux’s demands were a little OTT, even if it did have a right to an explanation for why every time it attempted to meet the rapper – including when it sent a team to Miami to see him – each meeting failed to materialise.

With all that in mind, the judge urged both parties to meet and seek a compromise, and report back to him in two weeks.