Conservative hate-talk show host Rush Limbaugh who has been under fire recently for his 3-day anti-women hate-filled diatribe attack on activist Sandra Fluke, has been ordered by another musical artist to stop playing their music. Last week it was Peter Gabriel and the Canadian trio Rush, and now when Tom Morello of Rage Against The Machine heard that Limbaugh had played their 1999 song "Sleep Now in the Fire" he tweeted and told Limbaugh to stop using their music:
Rage Against The Machine is one of the biggest activist bands ever, with lyrics that are not afraid to be in-your-face political, with songs such as, "Killing in the Name" and "Sleep Now in the Fire". Tom Morello of course has his alter-ego "The Nightwatchman" who has been heavily involved with the Occupy Movement. Watch the Michael Moore directed video of "Sleep Now in the Fire" below. (Photo credit: Penner/Flickr)
MAR 7, 2012 – The Canadian rock trio Rush, whose songs were being used by talk show host Rush Limbaugh as "bumpers" for his show, has received a letter from Rush's management demanding that Limbaugh immediately stop using any of the band's music in his show. The letter points out how using their music in a political show is a copyright infringement, and more importantly the band does not want people to assume that the band endorses or supports the hateful rhetoric Limbaugh engages in. (photo credit: Enrico Frangi/Wiki)
Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart have dabbled in activism over the years. They helped raise money during Canada's SARS outbreak in 2003, and donated money to the Canadian Museum of Human Rights. Geddy Lee, being a huge baseball fan, donated baseballs signed by legendary black baseball players to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. The guitarist, Alex Lifeson, developed a line of amplifiers stating that a donation would be made to UNICEF for every amp sold. Also, they are very involved with Grapes for Humanity Canada, where they help tragedy victims around the world, and "helping these victims become self-sufficient citizens of the world".
Here is the letter that was sent to Rush Limbaugh:
The Rush Limbaugh Show 1270 Avenue of the Americas New York, NY 10020
Ladies & Gentlemen:
I am the attorney for Rush, their management company, S.R.O. Management Inc., their music publishing company, Core Music Publishing and their record company, The Anthem Entertainment Group Inc.
According to media reports, Rush Limbaugh, Premiere Radio Networks and The Rush Limbaugh Show have been using Rush’s recorded music as part of what is essentially a political broadcast.
The use of Rush’s music in this way is an infringement of Rush’s copyrights and trademarks. The public performance of Rush’s music is not licensed for political purposes and any such use is in breach of public performance licenses and constitutes copyright infringement. There are civil and criminal remedies for copyright infringement, including statutory damages and fines.
In addition, the use of Rush’s music in this manner implies an endorsement of the views expressed and products advertised on the show, and is in breach of not only copyright and trademark rights, but also, of section 51 of the New York Civil Rights Law (excerpt attached). Accordingly, we hereby demand that you immediately stop all use of Rush’s music and confirm that you will do so.
Yours very truly,
Robert A. Farmer
Director of Legal Affairs
S.R.O. Management Inc., Core Music Publishing
The Anthem Entertainment Group Inc.
MAR 6, 2012 – Peter Gabriel was shocked to learn that his song "Sledgehammer" was in the background playing when conservative talk radio personality Rush Limbaugh was attacking Georgetown University law student and activist Sandra Fluke for speaking out on the need for her to use contraceptives for ovarian cyst prevention, and the need for that medicine to be available for all women as medicine covered by their insurance plans. Peter Gabriel has been a musical activist for years, from speaking out about human rights and peace, and working with Amnesty International. In 1980 he wrote a song for Steve Biko, an anti-apartheid activist that was beaten and killed by South African police. He has recently gave his support for a campaign to release an Iranian woman, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who was sentenced to death by Iranian courts for adultery.
In a statement on his Facebook Page, a spokesperson said, "Peter was appalled to learn that his music was linked to Rush Limbaugh's extraordinary attack on Sandra Flute. It is obvious from anyone that knows Peter's work that he would never approve such a use. He has asked his representatives to make sure his music is withdrawn and especially from these unfair aggressive and ignorant comments.”
Connect with JTMP and Peter Gabriel on Facebook, and below is a powerful live version of his song, "Biko" from the 1986 Amnesty International Conspiracy of Hope Tour. (Photo credit zarabeatriz/Flickr)