08 September 2008

First Jackson Browne, Now Heart

In no uncertain terms, Heart wants their music back.

The rock band Heart have [sic] lashed out against the Republican party after their song Barracuda was used twice to introduce vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin. "I think it's completely unfair to be so misrepresented," singer Nancy Wilson told Entertainment Weekly. "I feel completely fucked over."
Strong language, to say the least. The Guardian article (and the NYT, and the BBC ) reports that McCain spokesperson Brian Rogers insists that the campaign "paid for and obtained all necessary licenses" prior to using the song. Interestingly enough, both the British papers explain that, based on U.S. copyright law, use of the song is covered under a blanket fee paid by the convention venue, in this case the Xcel Energy Center. The NYT article makes no mention of this. Based on that note, it sounds specifically as if the facility is licensed to use the song, not the campaign or a specific organization such as the RNC. It will be interesting to see if Sarah Palin continues to march to the beat of the well known rock song.

More from Heart singer Nancy Wilson: "[Barracuda] was written in the late 70s as a scathing rant against the soulless, corporate nature of the music business, particularly for women ... There's irony in Republican strategists' choice to make use of it there."