Protecting the name of your band or musical acts name can help prevent confusion and can make marketing easier in the crowded music space. However, there are certain ways that musician trademarks differ from a typical trademark, especially in the requirements for registering a trademark for musical recordings with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (the USPTO.)
Should I Register My Band’s Name as a Trademark?
While trademark rights exist even if the trademark is not registered, registering the trademark takes your otherwise limited, local rights (unregistered trademark rights) and helps provide protection throughout the United States. In legal terms, it helps prove that you are, in fact, the owner of a trademark and that the trademark is protectable. From a business perspective, it is an asset that can be valuated, sold, and licensed to others. It also means that no other band can claim they “never heard of you” before selecting their own name, putting you in a solid legal position to ask them to stop using the similar band name that is likely to cause confusion with your name.
First, you must determine exactly what you plan to offer under the band/musical acts name.
Are You Selling (or Plan to Sell) Your Recorded Music?