Neil Young isn’t too happy. The Canadian singer-songwriter has posted a lawsuit against President Donald Trump claiming it’s a copyright infringement for the president to play his songs’ ‘Rockin’ in the Free World’ and ‘Devil’s Sidewalk’ at rallies and political events.
The complaint was filed in a New York federal court, according to Rick Gershon, a representative for Young.
Young has disapproved of Trump’s use of his music in his campaigns. The politician played ‘Rockin’ in the Free World’ on June 16, 2015, during an announcement of him running for president. Now on July 3, Trump’s campaign played Young’s songs during a speech at Mount Rushmore in South Dakota. During a rally on June 20 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, his songs were played again, said Young in his complaint.
His court filing read, “This complaint is not intended to disrespect the rights and opinions of American citizens, who are free to support the candidate of their choosing. “However, [Neil Young] in good conscience cannot allow his music to be used as a ‘theme song’ for a divisive, un-American campaign of ignorance and hate.”
It further states that the Trump campaign “does not now have, and did not at the time of the Tulsa rally, have a licence or [Young] ’s permission to play the two songs at any public political event”.
The complaint further read that the campaign as far back as 2015 “has wilfully ignored [Young] telling it to not play the songs and has wilfully proceeded to play the songs despite its lack of a licence”. Young acknowledged in 2016, a year after Trump used the song, that the campaign did indeed have the license to play the song.