The Henley exists squarely in the middle between the showiness of a collared shirt and the comfy ease of a T-shirt. Don Henley exists squarely in the middle between the flash of rock ’n’ roll and the laidback ramble of country-folk. But despite these similarities, you should never confuse the two, lest you face the legal wrath of the non-shirt Henley, as outdoor apparel retailer Duluth Trading Co. recently found out.
Last October, the company released the ad below, which whimsically suggested that you “Don a Henley and Take It Easy”—a play on the Eagles’ 1972 hit song “Take It Easy.”
Like many, Don Henley was not amused. Ignoring his own song’s advice to avoid letting the sound of your own wheels drive you crazy while you’re trying to score with as many hippie chicks as possible, Don Henley did not “lighten up.” In fact, he filed a lawsuit mere days after the ad went out, accusing the company of propagating the notion that he endorsed their Henleys. Because he doesn’t. Don Henley only looks out for Don’s Henleys—namely, Don Henley.
As the Duluth News Tribune writes, Duluth Trading “is known for clever, irreverent merchandising,” such as calling its khakis “Middle Management Chinos.” But when it comes to appealing to fiftysomething white men, Don Henley would prefer to do that with his music, thanks very much.
In settling the lawsuit, the company has made a donation to Henley’s Walden Woods Project non-profit, and issued a lengthy apology on its website. “We appreciate and respect what Mr. Henley has meant to music and we now see that our use of his name and an Eagles’ song title in our advertisement was inappropriate,” it reads in part. “For that we are deeply regretful and we apologize, not just to Mr. Henley, but to anyone else who took offense. We have learned a valuable lesson and thank Mr. Henley for helping us appreciate the importance that he and other artists place in their publicity rights.”
Don Henley’s similar lawsuit against boys who enjoy summer is still pending.
[via Ultimate Classic Rock]