Rep. Paul D. Ryan has become well tired of The Man (read: the U.S. government) sticking it to the little guy. So no surprise his budding vice presidential campaign liked to crank “We’re Not Gonna Take It” at his campaign events.
But in a repeat of many campaign moments past, the hard rockers who created the song don’t think much of the buttoned-down politician with the conservative social agenda who was trying to get mileage out of it.
Twisted Sister asked the Ryan campaign Wednesday to cease and desist playing its fed-up anthem. The Republican’s campaign immediately said it would comply. The Associated Press said the Ryan camp emailed: “We’re Not Gonna Play It anymore.”
Ryan has avowed a taste for metal and classic rock, saying he particularly likes Led Zeppelin. Now he joins a long list of politicians, particularly Republicans, who have been jilted by the pop stars they loved.
Earlier this year, Cyndi Lauper got hacked off when a television ad attacking Mitt Romney used her hit “True Colors.” She said her objection was not because she supported Romney (she didn’t) but because no one had asked her permission to use the song.
“Mr. Romney can discredit himself without the use of my work,” Lauper tweeted.
Four years ago, Jackson Browne asked John McCain’s campaign to drop his classic “Running on Empty” from an ad attacking then candidate Barack Obama. The McCain camp apologized and paid an undisclosed sum of money for using a portion of the hit song in a McCain Web video.
McCain running mate Sarah Palin took the stage at the Republican National Convention after the playing of Heart’s “Barracuda.” The Wilson sisters didn’t like it, with Ann saying that Palin did not speak for her or other American women.
George W. Bushhad more than one run-in with musicians that his two presidential campaigns embraced. His team liked Sting’s “Brand New Day.” But the onetime lead singer for the Police was an Al Gore man in 2000. He asked the Texas governor to stop using the song. It was the same tune four years later when Bush’s team embraced “Still the One” by the band Orleans, only to be told by the singer-songwriter John Hall he didn’t endorse the president. The Democrat was a backer of Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.).
Twisted Sister guitarist Jay Jay French called “We’re Not Gonna Take It” one of the most widely licensed songs in the world. But he said politicians had a way of running off with the group’s version without permission. Two tea party candidates agreed earlier to drop the song after objections from the band, French said.
French said he and his bandmates, including frontman Dee Snider, objected to Romney and Ryan’s stand on abortion and opposition to same-sex marriage.
“We understand it’s a protest song, but the use of our particular version of the song connotes our support,” French said. “We are absolutely opposed to this Republican ticket and to a social agenda that we find particularly disturbing.”