During the course of John McCain’s campaign, he has had a little trouble selecting music to accompany his public events. It seems that whatever he selects he ends up offending the artist who then objects to the use of the song and requests that McCain cease and desist. It has become such a recurring problem that I thought it would be prudent to begin to document it. So far, the following artists have publicly called on McCain to refrain from employing their refrains [updated 10/17/08]:
- Bon Jovi – Who Says You Can’t Go Home
- Foo Fighters – My Hero
- Heart – Barracuda
- Jackson Browne – Running on Empty
- Frankie Valli – Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You
- Owners of the Rocky Theme
- Van Halen – Right Now
- Orleans – Still the One
- Tom Petty – I Won’t Back Down
- John Mellencamp – Pink House and Our Country
- Chuck Berry – Johnny B. Goode
Mike Myers also complained when McCain used a clip of his character from Wayne’s World. But perhaps the most pathetic misappropriation occurred when McCain used a photograph as a backdrop for his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention. The picture was of the Walter Reed Middle School in North Hollywood, California, whose administration was none too pleased at having their institution politicized. In all likelihood, McCain meant to use a picture of the Walter Reed Medical Center. For a candidate who is running on his military resume, he ought to know what the famous Army facility looks like.
In any case, the McCain camp may want to seek permission in advance the next time they hear a song they think will spice up one of their rallies. Maybe former senator John Ashcroft would let McCain use his signature tune: Let the Eagle Soar.