Songwriters group sues bars over unlicensed music

National
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Songwriters and music publishers are suing bars around the country, saying they infringed on musical copyrights.

The Baltimore Sun reports the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers sued Baltimore sports bar Carlos O’ Charlies on Monday in federal court. ASCAP represents more than 690,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers and licenses establishments to play the 11.5 million songs in its repertoire.

ASCAP also is suing a dozen establishments in Chicago, New Orleans, San Francisco, Florida, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas. Spokesman Jackson Wagener says they spent up to five years reaching out, and is suing the businesses that refused to obtain licenses.

Owner Carlos Cruz says Carlos O’ Charlies licenses music through a Pandora business account. Such accounts don’t cover live and DJ performances.

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