For all you art aficionados, the canvases Al Bundy for President and Dennis the Mennis were not painted by, or endorsed by, Keith Lionel Urban the country music star. And the "Who Wouldn't Want to Be Me" singer is looking to make sure no one thinks otherwise.
Urban has sued a New Jersey artist also named Keith Urban, accusing the painter of taking advantage of their same-name status to peddle his work online using the Website keithurban.com, which, according to the Smoking Gun, the un-famous Urban registered in May 1999. That's the same year the album Keith Urban broke through at number 17 on the U.S. charts.
The complaint, filed Friday in U.S. District Court, states that the Jersey-based Urban "has registered an Internet domain name and has structured a related Website with the intent of producing confusion as to the sponsorship of the Website and the source of the goods advertised for sale thereon."
Visitors to the painter's home page are greeted with this message: "You have reached the site of Keith Urban. To those who don't know, oil painting is one of my hobbies. To view some of my work, please enter my virtual gallery."
Urban-the-artist doesn't flat-out claim to be the Grammy-winning Urban who's married to Nicole Kidman, but the country rocker has accused the 37-year-old painter of federal trademark infringement, dilution of federally registered trademark, federal unfair competition, violation of the Anti-Cyber Squatting Consumer Protection Act and violations of the Tennessee Consumer Protection and Personal Rights Protection Acts.
The high-profile plaintiff is seeking that ownership of the domain name keithurban.com be transferred over to him and has asked for unspecified damages and a permanent injunction forbidding Urban-the-artist from using keithurban.com or any Website utilizing that name or suggesting a connection with the singer to sell or publicize his paintings.
Meanwhile, the New Zealand-born and Nashville-based Urban's official Website is keithurban.net.
Urban, back in the saddle after a three-month stint in rehab to battle alcohol addiction, has announced that his 36-date Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy World Tour will kick off June 8 in Phoenix.
"I'm looking forward to getting back on the road, to reconnecting with everyone and to doing what it is that I love to do," Urban said last month. "To finally be able to present the songs from Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy Thing live, is something that I've been looking forward to doing since recording the album."
The performer is also up for a Grammy for Best Male Country Vocal Performance for "Once in a Lifetime," the same tune that helped him score two 2007 CMT Music Award nominations last week, for Video of the Year and Male Video of the Year.
The 49th Annual Grammy Awards airs Sunday on CBS, while the CMT honors will be doled out Apr. 16.