Romney drops use of song at events

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, greets supporters at his Florida primary primary night rally in Tampa, Fla., Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2012. )
AP Photo/Gerald Herbert
Mitt Romney
AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

LAS VEGAS, Nev. -- After being threatened with legal action, Mitt Romney's campaign said Wednesday it will cease to use a catchy song played to fire up crowds at recent events.

In a statement, Somali-Canadian artist K'naan said he was "dismayed" to learn that his song, "Wavin' Flag," was being used by the candidate. "I have not been asked for permission by Mitt Romney's campaign for the use of my song. If I had been asked, I would certainly not have granted it." the rapper said. "I would happily grant the Obama campaign use of my song without prejudice."

The song was Coca-Cola's promotional anthem of the 2010 World Cup. Romney's campaign played it twice -- once at a rally last Friday, when Puerto Rican Gov. Luis Fortuno endorsed Romney. and again on Tuesday night, after Romney's victory speech in the Florida primary.

The song had been a change of pace from Kid Rock's "Born Free," the campaign's official song that plays at every Romney event to introduce the candidate.

After getting wind of the threat, a campaign aide said: "The song was used through our regular blanket license, but we respect K'naan's statement and will not use his music again."

The episode is the latest instance in which musicians have clashed with campaigns over the use of their material. Most recently, in June, Michele Bachmann's campaign came under criticism from rock singer Tom Petty for playing his song "American Girl" at a rally.

Special Section: Campaign 2012
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