METALLICA has apologized to SANDMAN, a Canadian tribute band, after the latter group received a cease-and-desist letter from METALLICA's "very overzealous attorney" asking them to discontinue METALLICA's "official, stylized logos… on or to identify or promote live musical performances through Facebook and YouTube."
Said METALLICA in a statement: "We hear that a Canadian METALLICA tribute band is a little upset with us and with a little digging figured out why. It turns out that a certain letter was delivered to the band SANDMAN that neither we nor our management were aware of until it surfaced online. Lucky for us, the band was kind enough to post it for us to see, and it turns out that we have a very overzealous attorney who sent this letter without our knowledge.
"We have a long history of not only enjoying tribute bands, but we started as one. Heck, we even recorded a two-disc album of covers! We will always remember those days and continue to enjoy tribute bands, even inviting them to support us on various tours over the years.
"SANDMAN should file the letter in the trash. We've spoken to [SANDMAN's] Joe Di Taranto of the band and it’s all good. Keep doing what you're doing... we totally support you! And in the meantime, our attorney can be found at SFO catching a flight to go permanently ice fishing in Alaska."
Di Taranto told RollingStone.com that METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich called him on Wednesday to personally apologize. "He gave me and the band his full blessing to continue on as we were," said Di Taranto. "They want us to continue paying tribute to METALLICA with their full blessing and approval. We will continue to fly the METALLICA flag, loud and proud!!"
This is not the first time METALLICA has clashed with other parties over infringement issues. In January 1999, the band sued Victoria's Secret after it sold a lipstick line dubbed "Metallica." The lingerie company ended up settling with the band.
In 2000, METALLICA launched a trademark infringement suit over a perfume called "Metallica," which retailer Neiman Marcus was selling in its stores.