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Steven Tyler and Joe Perry
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Aerosmith, Rolling Stones, And More Want Politicians To Get Permission To Use Songs

Aerosmith, The Rolling Stones, and several other artists signed an open letter demanding politicians get permission before using their songs at political events.

Steven Tyler and Joe Perry of Aerosmith, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones, and several other artists have signed onto an open letter demanding politicians get permission before using their songs in any political capacity.

The nonprofit Artists Rights Alliance (ARA) wants Democratic and Republican campaigns to “Establish clear policies requiring campaigns to seek consent of featured recording artists, songwriters and copyright owners before publicly using their music in a political or campaign setting.”

The letter goes on to say, “As artists, activists and citizens, we ask you to pledge that all candidates you support will seek consent from featured recording artists and songwriters before using their music in campaign and political settings.  This is the only way to effectively protect your candidates from legal risk, unnecessary public controversy and the moral quagmire that comes from falsely claiming or implying an artist’s support or distorting an artists’ expression in such a high stakes public way.”

Other bands like R.E.M. and Pearl Jam have signed on the letter which says it’s not a new or partisan issue.  “Every election cycle brings stories of artists and songwriters frustrated to find their work being used in settings that suggest endorsement or support of political candidates without their permission or consent,” they wrote. “Being dragged unwillingly into politics in this way can compromise an artist’s personal values while disappointing and alienating fans – with great moral and economic cost. For artists that do choose to engage politically in campaigns or other contexts, this kind of unauthorized public use confuses their message and undermines their effectiveness.”

You can read the full letter here.