Ads 468x60px

Powered by Blogger.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Dillard University Ray Charles Program in African American Material Culture – 1st Annual Conference & Workshop

The Story of New Orleans Creole Cooking: The Black Hand in the Pot 

The Dillard University Ray Charles Program in African American Material Culture inaugural conference proudly presents,  “The Story of New Orleans Creole Cooking: The Black Hand in the Pot,” to be held at Dillard University on Thursday, April 16, 2015 and Friday, April 17, 2015 at the Whitney Plantation. This year’s conference will focus on the history and contributions of African-Americans to the world famous New Orleans Creole Cuisine from it’s origins to the Civil Rights Movement.

On Thursday, April 16, 2015, guest historians and lecturers, will present a full day of lectures, panel discussions, multimedia presentations and live performances. Culinary historian and historical interpreter, Michael Twitty will be the keynote speaker on Reading the West & Central African Presence in the Creole Culinary Repertoire. Twitty will also present a cooking demonstration at the oldest detached kitchen in Louisiana at the Whitney Plantation on Friday, April 17, 2015.

Topics and presenters include:  Memory Dishes from Gritsland and Riceland by Dr. Ibrahima Seck, Academic Director, Whitney Plantation; Feeding the Body and Soul - Louisiana Cuisine and its Relationship to Civil Rights Activism by A.P. Tureaud Jr., New Orleans Civil Rights Activist; The Ingenuity of the New Orleans Street Vendor by Barbara Trevigne, New Orleans Creole Historian; Before Martha Stewart there was  Lena Richard by Liz Williams, Director of the Southern Food & Beverage Museum; Uncovering the Culinary History of Dillard University: 1935-2014 by Zella Palmer, Director of the Dillard University Ray Charles Program; From Palm Fronds to Crawfish Bisque by Austin Sonnier, Educator, Master Gardener and Co-owner of Austin’s Gourmet to Go catering company.

The Dillard University Ray Charles Program in African American Material Culture mission is to research, document, disseminate and preserve the culinary patrimony of African Americans and to celebrate African American culture through the study of food and foodways in the South. The scholarship that the program and its institute engender will serve as the culinary focal point for the African American communities of New Orleans, the South, the United States and the world-at-large.

Ray Charles Case to Set Important Copyright Termination Precedent

The 9th Circuit is set to decide an important case involving the children of Ray Charles and the charitable foundation to which Mr. Charles willed his right to receive royalties from his music publishing agreement with Warner-Chappell Music.   With more artists and their heirs terminating prior assignments of copyrights, this case will either help affirm the protection afforded to authors and their heirs under the U.S. Copyright Act or weaken the Act’s protection of authors and their statutory heirs from premature transfers of their termination rights.

Section 304(c) of the U.S. Copyright Act provides the statutory heirs of deceased authors, in this case Mr. Charles’ children, the sole right to terminate the assignment of copyrights from an author to a third party. The termination right may not be transferred by will or by any other “agreement to the contrary.” Mr. Charles died before he was permitted under the statute to send the vast majority of termination notices to Warner-Chappell, the owner of his publishing rights.  Since under the statute, Mr. Charles could not donate the copyright termination right by will to his foundation, in order to ensure that his foundation would continue to receive the music publishing income stream after his death, Mr. Charles entered into agreements with each of his children providing that in exchange for $500,000 they would not take any actions to challenge the estate.  Nevertheless, the majority of Mr. Charles’ children decided to exercise their termination rights pursuant to Section 304(c) of the Copyright Act, arguing that the agreement they entered into with Mr. Charles is an “agreement to the contrary” that the statute preempts.  The Ray Charles Foundation, meanwhile, argues that the children have the right to terminate the copyrights, provided that they return the $500,000 they each received from Mr. Charles.  The Ray Charles Foundation also challenged the validity of the termination notices, including on the grounds that the musical compositions were created as “works made for hire,” which are not subject to termination under Section 304(c).

The District Court previously ruled that the children did not violate their agreement with the estate by filing the termination notices, and that the foundation was not entitled to a return of the $500,000 that each of the children had received.

On February 12th, the 9th Circuit heard an appeal by the Ray Charles Foundation of a district court’s ruling that the foundation lacks standing to challenge the termination notices Mr. Charles’ children sent to Warner-Chappell.  In this case, the fact that Warner-Chappell appears not to have raised objections to the termination notices itself suggests that the foundation may be grasping at straws.  In the vast majority of cases,  publishers have declined to assert the defense to termination that the musical compositions they own were created as “works made for hire.”

The case, however, does pose a legitimate question regarding the rights of non-copyright owner parties who may be affected by the termination of copyrights to raise objections to the validity of copyright termination notices.  For example, imagine a scenario in which an artist has a closely held entity that owns the artist’s sound recordings. [NOTE:  unlike musical compositions, which are almost always subject to the termination right, there is a reasonable amount of uncertainty regarding whether or not the work for hire language in recording agreements prevents artists from exercising their termination rights with respect to sound recordings.]  Now imagine that the artist-owned entity entered into a long-term distribution or licensing agreement with a third party record label.  The artist’s entity could effectively terminate the third party label’s right to continue to distribute or license the recordings by accepting the termination by the artist of the closely held entity’s rights in the recordings.  Yet, there is a legitimate issue of first impression regarding whether the work for hire provisions of a recording agreement would prohibit such a termination under the Copyright Act (in this case, Section 203 of the Copyright Act).  The decision of the 9th Circuit in The Ray Charles Foundation v. Robinson et al. 13-55421 (9th Cir. Filed March 12, 2013) will determine whether or not the third party record label will have the standing to challenge the validity of such terminations.
Blogger Templates