Donald Trump has gotten himself in trouble at various points in his campaign for playing songs by musical acts who didn't approve of their use at his rallies. Most recently, he was excoriated by the producer of the film "Air Force One" for walking out on the Republican National Convention stage Thursday to the movie's iconic theme song.
The criticism isn't anything new. Every election cycle comes with its own round of complaints from composers who don't want their music played by a political candidate whose ideals they don't share. A candidate needs a license to play a song at a public event, which former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee didn't have when he infamously played Survivor's "Eye Of The Tiger" last year at an event with Kentucky clerk Kim Davis.
Here's where it gets blurry: even if a candidate has the rights to play certain music, the composer of the song still may be able to prevent it from being played if he or she desires.
"Once you have the license in place you can play anything and publicly perform it," entertainment lawyer Steve Gordon told TPM. "The artist still can have an objection because although you have the license to play music, you didn’t get his permission."
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