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Lawsuit settled over Beach Boys name

By Carol Eisenberg

March 21, 2008 at 2:30pm

A five-year legal fight over the use of the Beach Boys name has been settled amicably, paving the way for a possible reunion by the surviving members of the California surf-sound group.

Alan Jardine and Mike Love reached an agreement after a two-day conference in Los Angeles Superior Court, attorney Lawrence Noble, who represents Jardine, said Thursday. “Mr Jardine feels very happy and feels that this is a friendly settlement that allows them to focus on the talent and future of this American iconic band,” Noble said.

Details of the settlement were not disclosed. But lawyers said that its friendly nature could open the door to a long-awaited reunion for the group, which once dominated pop charts with hits such as “I Get Around” and “Good Vibrations.”

“Certainly everybody would love it, but we’re taking it a day at a time,” Noble told Reuters. “We’ve cleared out a lot of negative history, we’re looking forward to the future, and hopefully a lot of good things will happen.”

The Beach Boys were founded in 1961 by brothers Brian, Carl and Dennis Wilson, their cousin, Love, and Brian Wilson’s friend, Jardine. Dennis Wilson died in 1983 and Carl Wilson died in 1998.

In the latest of a series of such suits, Love filed papers against Jardine in 2003, claiming he toured with groups that used versions of the Beach Boys name, such as Beach Boys Family & Friends. The lawsuit said Love was the only one licensed to perform under that name, and sought $2 million in court costs and $1 million that he said Jardine had collected from using the name.

Love and Jardine both attended the settlement conference, spending the first day in court chatting and occasionally singing lines from “Help Me Rhonda” and other songs while attorneys met with the judge in chambers. Brian Wilson also attended for part of the first day.

All three are shareholders of Brother Records, along with the Carl Wilson estate.

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