September 04, 2008

Okay, Ladies.

Ann and Nancy, are you sure about this?

Because I buy music. I buy it compulsively. I buy more music than I buy premium gin.

I have several of your albums on vinyl, and one on CD, and several more tracks that I got through iTunes. I've been meaning to get Hope and Glory, and was considering picking up another album from the old days of the 1970s. I know I can listen track by track off my computer, or on the iPod, but . . . there's something about listening to an entire album all the way through that really floats my boat. Something about having a Cruiser with a sunroof, I suppose.

I saw you in concert in 1980. Really: I'm that fucking old.

You must reconsider, O My Heart-throbs. There are a lot of Libertarian rock and roll people out there; didn't Reynolds mention recently that he'd just listened to to Dreamboat Annie again, and thought "Crazy on You" was the best song ever written about oral sex? (Oh, sorry: "the best Cold War-inspired song about oral sex ever." My bad.)

Even Chris Muir has been promoting you.

* * *

Hog Beatty: "Dreamboat Annie? Now that album is great, from beginning to end." The man is a walking encyclopedia of rock and roll, dressed up as a blueprint salesman. I was actually going to ask him to dissect for me the differences between the drumwork in "Barracuda" versus "The Immigrant Song," which of course Ann Wilson covered in Hope and Glory. Both songs depend on drums and superhuman lungpower. When I was in high school I was more of a Queen chick than a Led Zepp girl; something to do with the fact that my friends played chess more than they smoked dope, I suppose. Now that I am putatively a grownup, I can listen to whatever I like.

* * *

And, um, RNC? If we're going to use the song, we should be paying the Wilson sisters something for it; fair is fair.

Can't we find whoever-it-is that negotiated the deal between Rush Limbaugh and Chrissie Hynde, and get this ironed out?

We can work it out. Can't we?

Posted by Attila Girl at September 4, 2008 10:39 PM | TrackBack

Well, I just can't believe that no one had the smarts to check this out first and get permission. Came in via your Twitter post.

Posted by: c.a. Marks at September 5, 2008 05:07 AM

Seems to me they were pretty clear about it. After all its their song and I thought you GOP types supported property rights?

Posted by: Scott at September 5, 2008 08:10 AM

Ok, first of all, maybe you hate captchas, but oh boy oh boy it can't be fun having spam all over your blog.

Secondly, to Scott, I dunno about other GOP or conservative types. My take on the matter is that property is yours until you give or sell it away. And if you turn it into a tradeable commodity, don't expect to have too much control over what others do with it.

It would be the same as if the KKK Philharmonic, for example, said they didn't want filthy, uppity, dark-skinned folk playing their music. If they pays the money, they gets their music, ya know? Not that most right-minded artists would turn down any revenue stream. And not that after saying something like that, they'd be getting a revenue stream from said dark-skinned folk. Just sayin; you pay, you get.

And besides, asking people to reconsider a stupid decision is hardly nationalising their 'intellectual' assets, now is it?

Posted by: Gregory at September 5, 2008 08:35 AM

Limbaugh cut the deal with Hynde before Limbaugh became a conservative icon. If Limbaugh had to negotiate the deal today, he could not bring it off, because Hynde opposes the things that Limbaugh advocates. (Limbaugh loves that, though. It is one reason he will never change the theme music.)

As for paying royalties, the Republican Party is willing to do that. The Wilsons don't want the money.

It's their loss. Free publicity pays for itself. Especially when you are getting paid every time you get publicized. Some folks are just stuck on stupid.

Posted by: Mark L at September 5, 2008 09:52 AM

Mark, you are incorrect. The Hynde-Limbaugh deal occurred in 1997, and I remember tuning in the first morning that he started a show without "My City Was Gone." Rush was already quite rich, and quite famous, and had been on the air for over a decade.

According to Hynde's Wikipedia entry, she reached an accommodation with Limbaugh when he (1) gave Hynde's royalties to an animal-rights organization, and (2) editorialized about an instance of animal cruelty that they agreed on.

Posted by: Attila Girl at September 5, 2008 10:38 AM

1.)License fees were already paid when the songs were played. 2.) No prior permission required. 3.) End of discussion.

Royalties (performing rights payments) were already paid for use of the songs to BMI/ASCAP/SESAC by the venue (Xcel Energy Center) or agent of the venue or an agency hired by Republicans to handle the sound/music portion of the program. Since the venue owns the equipment, I'm pretty sure they supply the personnel or work off an approved list of subcontractors. The Wilsons, like almost every songwriter/performer have sold their rights to publishing companies, mechanical rights organizations, and performance rights organizations (BMI/ASCAP/SESAC). These organizations that administer the rights to millions of songs do not have the time or the inclination to consider special requests as to the song's use-- they simply collect the appropriate license fee.

From the ASCAP website-- -- "One of the greatest sources of long-and short-term income for songwriters and publishers is the royalty money received from performing rights societies around the world. Of the $4 billion generated worldwide each year, the three U.S. organizations account for over $1.5 billion in collections, with writer- and publisher-owned American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) accounting for over 50% of the total. These organizations negotiate license-fee agreements with the users of music (radio and TV stations, cable stations, concert halls, wired music services, airlines, websites, etc.), which give the user the right to perform the music and lyrics of any member of these organizations. The fees then collected are distributed to the writers and music publishers whose works are performed in the licensed areas. This performing right is one of the most important rights granted by a country's copyright laws. It's based on the concept that a writer's creation is a property right and that a license must be acquired by any user of music in order for that user to perform a copyrighted musical work."

Seems to me some Christian group tried to sue to stop a strip club from using their work a few years ago unsuccessfully. Good luck on convincing the courts that performing rights organizations has to consider the political/social views of artists in granting blanket licenses "Let's see, they're Vegans, opposing NAFTA and organized religion and ...."

So the Wilson sisters join Bruce Springsteen, who did the same thing to Ronald Reagan; Bobby McFerrin(Don't Worry, Be Happy) to G.H.W. Bush; and John Mellencamp and Jackson Browne who did it to John McCain earlier. McCain/Palin will probably do what the others did and stop using the songs. Even though they didn't have to. Has it come to placing "Left" and "Right" stickers on all media? Sure you want to play that game?

Posted by: Darrell at September 5, 2008 02:39 PM

Darrel has it right. Thanks. Now I don't need to write all that.

Posted by: Desert Cat at September 5, 2008 06:19 PM

I meant to ask you, Desert Cat, if you saw Jesse Jackson in the Arizona desert... I read an interview in the Chicago Tribune a few weeks ago where he said he was in the desert after his castration remark, presumably fasting and other things. I wondered if the local press had any mention as to which five-star resort. He made it sound as if he was in the wilderness, although he didn't mention forty days and forty nights. I like to keep track of locals.

Posted by: Darrell at September 5, 2008 07:14 PM

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