“ASCAP does not track songs that are publicly performed in stadiums, which policy ASCAP has intentionally hid from composers,” according to a lawsuit filed by Bobby Kent, the former musical director for the Chargers. Kent wrote the Chargers’ fight song “Stadium Doo Dads,” best known for its “da da da da da da — charge!” chorus. Kent, who wrote the song with Bernardo Hollman in 1978, claims he’s been paid “little to nothing since 1982” by ASCAP for the song’s use in stadiums.
Kent and the music publishing company he co-owns are suing the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers, claiming ASCAP collected licensing and other usage fees from “third-party users” of the song, without turning those fees over to Kent and Hollbrand. “ASCAP has issued blanket licenses for the use of Kent’s composition and collected millions of dollars for its use,” alleges the complaint. “The royalties paid to Kent and Hollman commencing in 1990 and for a few years thereafter only represent the licensing fees paid to ASCAP by the San Diego Chargers and not any of the other sports teams, stadiums, arenas, or other users of Kent’s composition.”
The song remains so popular that it was played over the loudspeakers by the Texas Rangers over 30 times during the 2010 World Series. Kent copyrighted “Stadium Doo Dads” in 1981, receiving $10,000 to $20,000 annually from the Chargers for its use over the following few years.