Village People Ask Trump to Stop Playing Their Music During Rallies

Village People
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Village People
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Photo Credit: Donald Trump / CC by 3.0

Victor Willis, the co-founder of the Village People, has asked Trump to stop playing the group’s music during rallies.

Willis specifically requested that Trump no longer play the hits “Y.M.C.A.” and “Macho Man” during the political events. The request came shortly after Trump used law enforcement officers to clear Lafayette Square of protestors with tear gas and batons.  Willis’ frequently dresses up as a cop as part of his on-stage persona, while other members dress up as construction workers, military officers, and leather-clad bikers.

But while Willis is free to ask Trump to stop playing the music, the President is unlikely to comply. The reason is that U.S. copyright law typically allows public performances based on blanket statutory licensing. That means if the venue holding the Trump rally has a license to play music, Trump can pretty much play whatever he likes. That explains why numerous artists like AerosmithElton John, Adele, Rihanna, the Rolling Stones, the Prince Estate, and R.E.M. have publicly asked Trump to stop — to no avail.

In a Facebook post, Willis writes: “If Trump orders the U.S. military to fire on his own citizens (on U.S. soil), Americans will rise up in such numbers outside the White House that he might be forced out of office before the election. Don’t do it, Mr. President!”

“I ask that you no longer use any of my music at your rallies – especially ‘Y.M.C.A.’ and ‘Macho Man.’ Sorry, but I can no longer look the other way.”

Willis’ post marks a reversal of his stance on Trump playing Village People music. In February, Willis wrote that he refrained from requesting Trump to stop because “our music is not being used for a specific endorsement.” That statement came after Village People fans reached out, asking Willis to stop allowing the music to be played.

4 Responses

  1. restless94110

    You would think the 100 year olds in The Village People would know by now that anyone can play your work, they just have to pay a royalty.

    So why don’t you old gummers Just Shut Up And Take the Money. I guess it’s true: You just can’t fix Stupid.

    • Al Jolson

      You actually need to get permission (it’s not just paying money, but being allowed). Learn the rules. Jesus, such quick and stupid comments from people here.

      • Al Jolson

        Oops, I made a stupid mistake with my comment above. I just went and read about blanket licenses and started learning about the music business.

        Also, do not forget…..TRUMP 2020!

        Love puddles to all.

        • Al Jolson

          Oops, another mistake. Content creators actually do have the right to deny use of their works. Damn, I am so stupid most times.