Blog: Campaign Songs

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Mitt Romney joined a long line of political candidates this week.

Not with the Nevada caucus win, or aggressive campaigning, but with threatened legal action from musicians.

K’Naan asked Romney to stop using his 2009 hit ‘Wavin’ Flag’ after Romney played it during his Florida primary victory speech.

This isn’t the first time GOP candidates and musicians have clashed. Newt Gingrich was sued in January for using the song “Eye of the Tiger” and was requested to stop using the song “How Do You Like Me Now” by The Heavy.

The New York Times outlines several others, including Michelle Bachmann, John McCain, and Sarah Palin.

Why does this keep happening? Is it a liberal-conservative conflict? Perhaps in this case, but not universally: K’Naan said he would be happy to let Obama use his song, but Obama has been asked by musicians to cease using songs in the past as well.

Is it a politics-creativity divide? Is music’s emotional and cultural appeal so powerful that politicians can’t help themselves? Or is it a money issue? What if politicians were made to pay for use, like advertisers?

Either way, there’s no word yet on whether Herman Cain and Stephen Colbert’s”‘Rock Me Like a Herman Cain” rally has provoked ire from the Scorpions.

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