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Patented by Edison - the Album

In 1960, American jazz trumpeter Harry "Sweets" Edison and the Harry "Sweets" Edison Quintet released their album "Patented by Edison".

While none of the album's tracks relates to Intellectual Property, the album cover shows a trumpet disassembled in its major components depicted as individual patent figures.

(The cover art copyright is believed to belong to the label, Roulette Records, or the graphic artist(s)).

Well, from an IP professional point of view there are a few issues with this album:

  • The trumpet isn't an invention of Mr. Edison.

Trumpet-like instruments are known since the ancient Egypt. Around 1818 German inventors Heinrich Stölzel and Friedrich Blühmel added valves to the basic body forming the instrument known nowadays as trumpet.

In consequence, Mr. Edison unauthorizedly claimed patent rights, utilizing the power of patents to better market his production.

  • The patent figures are neither line art nor black & white and there are too many figures on one page. Rejections in this regard would have to be expected.

  • The use of pseudonyms to denominate the applicant may be another issue.

Be that as it may, it is noteworthy that patent imagery is employed by musicians to decorate their albums. Yet another step (already taken back in 1960) creating public IP awareness.

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