Neil Young Files Lawsuit Against the Trump Campaign for Over the Use of His Songs at Rallies

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Rock Cellar Magazine

Neil Young has had enough of hearing his music played at the Trump administration’s campaign rallies — and on Tuesday, the outspoken rock and roll legend filed a lawsuit against President Trump’s campaign over just that.

Per Rolling Stone, Young shared the lawsuit on his Neil Young Archives site. Focusing specifically on the use of “Rockin’ in the Free World” and “Devil’s Sidewalk” at recent campaign rallies, Young’s suit contends that the Trump campaign does not have a proper license to use those compositions in such a format.

The lawsuit reads, per Rolling Stone:

“The Campaign does not now have, and did not at the time of the Tulsa rally, have a license or Plaintiff’s permission to play the two Songs [‘Rockin’ in the Free World’ and ‘Devil’s Sidewalk’] at any public political event,” adding that Young is seeking statutory damages in the maximum amount allowed for willful copyright infringement.”

The entire lawsuit can be viewed at the Neil Young Archives site by clicking here.

This development should come as little surprise to anybody familiar with the catalog and public persona of Neil Young, who has long been vocal and explicit regarding his stance on political issues. In February 2019, for example, Young became a United States citizen after years of interest, and promptly posted “An Open Letter to Donald J. Trump” on his Archives site. It began:

“You are a disgrace to my country. Bragging about the US economy does not disguise the fact that the numbers today are what you inherited almost four years ago.” 

Young’s lawsuit also comes after the Rolling Stones threatened one of their own for the same reason (their music being played at campaign rallies), as well as the estate of Tom Petty issuing a cease-and-desist after “I Won’t Back Down” was heard at the President’s Tulsa rally in June.


  • The Rocker says:

    Ahh,, no no no Neil,,, Don’t believe that leftists drab…
    America did not inherit the economy from Obama Admin.
    This economy is created from the changes the Trump Admin. put in force.

  • Hope Duchaine says:

    I am totally backing up Neil Young. The President thinks that he can get away with anything that he wants. Well, Neil, love, I am standing with you on this.

  • REB says:

    Shame on you Neil Young! Quit bashing our president because of your songs! You should be thanking him! You have no idea what you’re talking about as far as the economy. You are a good song writer, average guitarist, and adequate singer. You made a lot of money off of the USA for being a Canadian. That’s the only value you’ve given our country, songs. You never volunteered to serve in the military. All you’ve done is whine and bitch like the liberal activist you are, which is quite disturbing! Also, if you’re going to salute whatever you were saluting in that picture, find a real American Patriot or Military Veteran and have them teach you how! You’re kind of old to be told to grow up!

  • Petey says:

    Y’all ever look into the lyrics of (CSN)Young’s songs? The mans felt this way for a long time and has voiced his political opinions loud and proud. Thank you, Neil.

  • Dan says:

    Hum, what Trump policies made the economy so hot, the tax cut maybe? But Trump is responsible for tanking the economy because he’s a moron and who ran six of his companies into the ground. See the similarities? Except this time he’s killed 120,000 lives that he could have prevented, but again Trump is an idiot and incompetent. He’s also a coward and is corrupt.

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