Friday, September 05, 2008

Barracuda (Fuse & Hiratzka Mix)

Song: Barracuda (Fuse & Hiratzka Mix)
Artist: Heart
Album: Barracuda

Heart have just recently made news by their very public disinterest in the GOP using their song “Barracuda” when Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin is onstage. (The song was used during her speech at the RNC convention and then again when she joined McCain after his speech, it from an old nickname she got as a high school basketball star, “Sarah Barracuda.”) I have been surprised by some of the comments I’ve read from people responding to what the Heart sisters have done, and I wonder… are we actually no longer allowed to speak our minds?

The band sent a cease and desist letter after the first use, and after last nights use they released this statement:

“Sarah Palin’s views and values in NO WAY represent us as American women. We ask that our song ‘Barracuda’ no longer be used to promote her image. The song ‘Barracuda’ was written in the late ’70s as a scathing rant against the soulless, corporate nature of the music business, particularly for women. (The ‘barracuda’ represented the business.) While Heart did not and would not authorize the use of their song at the RNC, there’s irony in Republican strategists’ choice to make use of it there.”

As I understand it, legally Heart can’t sue… while they have said they didn’t have “permission” there is a loophole in royalties and copyright law in which any song can be played during a live broadcast without paying royalties OR getting permission. (One of the reasons that the Today show can play just about anything, including Beatles tunes, during their broadcast.) But Heart just really seem to want to express their grievances publicly… and shouldn’t they?

I have read that people plan to boycott Heart’s music… a-la the Dixie Chicks after their George W comment. Now, the Dixie Chicks received death threats and the like for being outspoken, and some of these things I’ve been reading regarding Heart are pretty outrageous. When it comes to politics, should we silence our entertainers? In my opinion these people are artists that created a work that they have the right to protect. And I would think that a simple “please don’t use this song” would suffice in a situation like this… but the organizers of the RCN convention didn’t listen…

What do you think? Should Heart “shut up and sing” like the Dixie Chicks? Or do they have the right to say what they want like every American? You could argue that they have an unfair advantage as they have more means, based on their public status, to get their thoughts out to the public. But they earned that… shouldn’t they be able to use it?
This is a great remix of this great song.



This is what I’m talking about:

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