Sunday 20 October 2019

Which musicians have banned Trump and other politicians from using their songs?

Queen, The Smiths, Rihanna and Pharrell Williams are among those who have taken issue.

Donald Trump (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
Donald Trump (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

By Alex Green, PA Entertainment Reporter

Twitter has removed a tweet by US President Donald Trump that featured Nickelback’s song Photograph after receiving a copyright complaint from the band.

The satirical clip took aim at former vice president Joe Biden, suggesting he had had illegal dealings with Ukrainian politicians.

ipanews_31d9bf04-5672-448d-9b5e-46a73dc1b4bb_embedded21662435
Nickelback lead singer Chad Kroger (Anthony Harvey/PA)

It is not the first time musicians have banned Mr Trump from using their music.

Here we run down the times Mr Trump – and other politicians – have been reprimanded by musicians for using their music or image.

ipanews_31d9bf04-5672-448d-9b5e-46a73dc1b4bb_embedded241740454
Brian May of Queen (Ian West/PA)

Donald Trump and Queen

Rock band Queen were not happy with Mr Trump when he walked on stage to We Are The Champions during the Republic National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, in the lead-up to the election that put him in the White House.

The band said on Twitter that it was “against our wishes” for the song to be used.

ipanews_31d9bf04-5672-448d-9b5e-46a73dc1b4bb_embedded226712125
Adele (Yui Mok/PA)

…and Adele

The Tottenham chart-topper’s hits Rolling In The Deep and Skyfall were played at Mr Trump’s political rallies in 2016, prompting her spokesman to point out she had not given permission for her music to be used for any political campaigning.

ipanews_31d9bf04-5672-448d-9b5e-46a73dc1b4bb_embedded229211438
REM lead singer Michael Stipe (Victoria Jones/PA)

…and REM

Frontman Michael Stipe was furious after the band’s song It’s The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) was played at a rally.

Mr Trump also faced the US rockers’ ire when he retweeted a video of his State of the Union address accompanied by the band’s 1992 song Everybody Hurts.

The doleful ballad played as the camera panned to the faces of prominent Democrats looking downcast and irritated by Mr Trump’s speech.

The president has also been criticised by Pharrell Williams, Rihanna, the late Prince’s estate and Aerosmith for using their music at his rallies.

ipanews_31d9bf04-5672-448d-9b5e-46a73dc1b4bb_embedded237407500
David Cameron (Steven Paston/PA)

David Cameron and The Smiths

While Morrissey and Johnny Marr might not agree on much these days, the former bandmates came together to condemn David Cameron after he included one of The Smiths’ songs in his Desert Island Discs.

During a 2006 appearance on the show, the former prime minister chose This Charming Man as one of the 10 tracks he would like to take with him to his remote island.

Rock guitarist Marr responded: “I do forbid him to like it. He shouldn’t like us because we’re not his kind of people.”

ipanews_31d9bf04-5672-448d-9b5e-46a73dc1b4bb_embedded211043317
Morrissey (Ben Birchall/PA)

Morrissey quickly chimed in, adding: “I would like to, if I may, offer support to Johnny Marr who has spoken out to the media this week against David Cameron.

“David Cameron hunts and shoots and kills stags – apparently for pleasure.

“It was not for such people that either Meat Is Murder or The Queen Is Dead were recorded; in fact, they were made as a reaction against such violence.”

ipanews_31d9bf04-5672-448d-9b5e-46a73dc1b4bb_embedded245611810
Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Nigel Farage and Rage Against The Machine

US anti-fascist punk rockers Rage Against The Machine were unhappy with the Brexit Party leader riffing on their name for his podcast, which was titled Farage Against The Machine.

July 2018 saw the band send a cease and desist letter to the former Ukip leader which said his podcast, hosted on LBC radio, “brazenly and unlawfully exploits” their name.

More recently former RATM guitarist Tom Morello showed off a “f*** Farage” sign when he supported Muse at a show in London in June.

PA Media

Editors Choice

Also in Entertainment

Back to top