When Tupac Shakur returned from the grave to "perform" at last year's Coachella, fans' jaws dropped. But the family of at least one hip-hop luminary isn't quite as thrilled about the prospect of a post-mortem show.
Icelene Jones, the wife of deceased Wu-Tang Clan rapper Ol' Dirty Bastard, has filed a cease-and-desist order against Rock the Bells, the hip-hop festival scheduled for Sept. 7-8 in San Bernardino. The fest had planned to use similar technology to the Tupac projection to show 3-D footage of ODB alongside his old band's headlining set.
“I am disappointed that Rock the Bells would not contact me directly about the use of my husband’s image," said Jones, the executor of ODB's estate. "I am looking forward to talking to Wu-Tang about this matter and coming up with a positive solution in order to bring my husband to the stage once again.”
Jones claimed to have full rights to license ODB's likeness, and had not come to any such agreement with Rock the Bells' producers Guerilla Union. Organizer Chang Weisberg told HipHopDX that he'd gotten permission from ODB's mother, Cherry Jones, and other ODB partners to use the likeness. Cherry Jones and Icelene Jones have previously sparred over the management of ODB's estate.
Weisberg said he'd pull the plug on the virtual performances (another one with Eazy-E joining Bone Thugs-N-Harmony is planned) if the artists' families and estates formally objected, but added that "there's no ... way we're gonna let anybody down. It's that simple. That's my vision. Until we get there, my head's down in the ground. I'm not even gonna look up for air. I'm gonna make sure we change music history those nights."
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