System Of A Down are being threatened with legal action by US boxing ring announcer MICHAEL BUFFER for quoting his “Let’s get ready to rumble” catchphrase during a gig last summer.
SOAD guitarist Daron Malakian yelled the boxing-ring battle cry as the band broke into ‘Sugar’ during their encore when they were supporting Metallica in Baltimore in July, which was later broadcast on MTV.
According to reports on music site Allstar, Buffer‘s legal team claim the phrase is trademarked and cannot be used in public by anyone without prior consent. Two US radio DJs have already been pulled up for quoting him.
SOAD have issued a statement in which they said they had learned their lesson and promised not to use Buffer‘s phrase in public again, nor mention the words, “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn”, “I’ll be back”, “Go ahead, make my day” or “Yeah, baby!” in public again either.
UK teen TV stars and sometime pop stars Ant & Dec had a Top Ten hit with the single ‘Let’s Get Ready To Rhumble’ in Britain in July 1994, released under the moniker PJ & Duncan, their characters’ names in the BBC kids’ drama ‘Byker Grove’ which shot them to stardom.
However, a spokesperson for Telstar, the label which released the single, said that while the song’s title was taken from a wrestling programme on TV, they changed it to ‘Rhumble’ with an ‘h’ not because of potential legal wrangles such as those faced by System Of A Down, but because they wanted to distance themselves from fighting and violence as they still had a clean-cut kids’ TV image to preserve.