Manowar’s Joey DeMaio continues to be a bona fide putz.
You may recall that in September, DeMaio tried to get YouTube to take down a video of Womanowar, the self-proclaimed “feminist Manowar tribute band” featuring three-fourths of the group A Sound of Thunder (including vocalist Nina Osegueda, who performs in Womanowar as ‘Erica Madams’). Unfortunately for DeMaio, he doesn’t own the publishing on “Manowar,” the song Womanwar were performing in the video, and so his claim had no legal basis, and YouTube eventually restored the video. I’m gonna put it below, both so you can see how awesome Womanowar are, and because I know it would piss-off DeMaio (who I strongly suspect will read this… hi, Joey!):
Despite this initial defeat, DeMaio isn’t giving up on his attempts to shut down a band that — again — is paying homage to HIS goddamn music. Womanowar have now received a cease and desist from the law firm of Olshan Frome Wolosky, acting on behalf of DeMaio. The bassist wants Womanowar to change their logo, which is a very clear play on the original Manowar logo (which is fairly standard practice for a tribute band):
According to DeMaio’s attorneys, the similarity in logos “is likely to cause confusion among the consuming public, and “Demand is hereby made that you immediately change your logo so as not to be confusingly similar to our client’s logo.”
So, to review: Joey DeMaio wants Womanowar to change their logo because he thinks his fans are total morons who can’t read and/or can’t count letters and/or do not know that ‘Manowar’ is a different word from ‘Womanowar.’
Look. I don’t know why Joey DeMaio is going after a group of people who are clearly admirers of his music, and who, we can assume, are not getting rich playing it. Womanowar represent no threat whatsoever to Manowar under any circumstances… especially given that Manowar are going away soon.
So this is just my two cents… but the whole thing, frankly, smacks of misogyny, and the reason it smacks of misogyny is this: there are two all-male Manowar tribute bands that do not seem to have ever run into any trouble with DeMaio.
Nightglow, from Italy, began as a Manowar tribute band, and their bio goes so far as to boast that “the official American Manowar fan club recognized them as the only European Manowar tribute band worthy of the name,” so it seems safe to assume that DeMaio is familiar with them. Nightglow’s logo looks nothing like Manowar’s, but there are no shortage of videos of Nightglow performing Manowar material online.
Meanwhile, The Triumph of Steel bills itself as “Australia’s number one Manowar tribute band.” Again, there are no similarities in the logo, but The Triumph of Steel have multiple videos online in which they perform Manowar songs.
Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe DeMaio doesn’t know about these bands, or maybe his lawyers just haven’t gotten around to pestering them yet. But as of right now, the only thing which separates Womanowar from the bands DeMaio has left alone is that Womanowar includes a lady and proudly identifies as feminist.
Funny enough, DeMaio has the balls to make sure that an interview quote in which he claims “I believe in the fans” appears prominently at the bottom of every page of Manowar’s official website. All evidence to the contrary, Joey.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering: yes, Womanowar have found a temporary workaround.