On Wednesday, the Animals’ classic “House of the Rising Sun” played over the speakers at a Wilmington, North Carolina airport as Air Force One taxied down the runway en route to an appearance there. Video of the scene with the song’s usage was later disseminated on social media. The 1964 single had also been played at previous Trump rallies.
Burdon responded to Trump’s use of “House of the Rising Sun” in a pointed statement where the singer both criticized the president and threw his support behind the Biden/Harris ticket.
“Even though nobody asked my permission, I wasn’t surprised to learn that #Trump #864511320 used #Houseof theRisingSun for his rally the other day,” Burdon said in a statement. “A tale of sin and misery set in a brothel suits him so perfectly! Far more appropriate for this time in our history might be.”
Burdon added, nodding to another Animals single, “#WeGottaGetOutofThisPlace. This is my answer #vote #saveourdemocracy #bidenharris2020.”
In recent months, Neil Young, the Rolling Stones and the estates of Tom Petty and Leonard Cohen have all decried Trump’s unauthorized use of their music on the campaign trail; most recently, the RNC played a cover of Cohen’s “Hallelujah” during a fireworks display to close out the convention.
“We are surprised and dismayed that the RNC would proceed knowing that the Cohen Estate had specifically declined the RNC’s use request, and their rather brazen attempt to politicize and exploit in such an egregious manner ‘Hallelujah,’ one of the most important songs in the Cohen song catalogue,” said Michelle L. Rice, legal representative of the Cohen Estate.
“Had the RNC requested another song, ‘You Want it Darker,’ for which Leonard won a posthumous Grammy in 2017, we might have considered approval of that song.”
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