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Rolling Stones to Trump: Stop Using Our Songs

  • Ken Bredemeier

Keith Richards (R), Mick Jagger (C) and Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones perform a free outdoor concert at Ciudad Deportiva de la Habana sports complex in Havana, Cuba, March 25, 2016. The legendary rockers say they have never given permission to Donald Trump's presidential campaign to use their songs.

Keith Richards (R), Mick Jagger (C) and Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones perform a free outdoor concert at Ciudad Deportiva de la Habana sports complex in Havana, Cuba, March 25, 2016. The legendary rockers say they have never given permission to Donald Trump's presidential campaign to use their songs.

The musicians of the legendary rock group The Rolling Stones have told Donald Trump, the presumptive U.S. Republican presidential nominee, to stop using their songs at his campaign rallies.

The rockers told Trump, "The Rolling Stones have never given permission to the Trump campaign to use their songs and have requested that they cease all use immediately."

The Trump campaign has often used the group's hits "You Can't Always Get What You Want" and "Start Me Up" to rally his supporters at campaign events.

The Rolling Stones are the latest musicians to demand the billionaire real estate mogul stop using their music. Everlast demanded that Trump stop playing "Jump Around" by the rapper's former band, House of Pain, while Neil Young, R.E.M. and Adele have also complained about use of their music.

Some musicians object to use of their music because they want to protect their financial interests, while others support other candidates and object to being linked to their political opponents.

Such was the case with R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe, a supporter of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. He objected to Trump's use of R.E.M.'s "It's the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" for his "moronic charade of a campaign."

FILE - Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds up a sign handed to him by a supporter after speaking at a campaign rally in Bethpage, New York, April 6, 2016. Trump insist that he "always buys the rights" for songs played at his rallies.

FILE - Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds up a sign handed to him by a supporter after speaking at a campaign rally in Bethpage, New York, April 6, 2016. Trump insist that he "always buys the rights" for songs played at his rallies.


Political campaigns do not need artists' permission to play their songs at campaign rallies as long as they or the venues they appear at have secured licensing from performing rights organizations.

Trump told one interviewer that he had "no problem" with the Rolling Stones, adding that he likes Mick Jagger and that he "always buys the rights" to use the songs.

Those at Trump rallies often hear a diverse selection of music, including Elton John's "Tiny Dancer" and Broadway hits from "Cats" and "Phantom of the Opera," both written by Andrew Lloyd Webber, a former resident of Trump Tower in New York.

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