The Beastie Boys just did something for Biden they’ve never done before

The Beastie Boys are protective of their music. They’ve never licensed any of their songs to any company or person to be used in an ad — but that’s all in the past, and the group is ready to make some noise by allowing the use of what is arguably their most popular hit single, “Sabotage,” to the Joe Biden campaign.

But the ad in question isn’t just your ordinary campaign ad. As Variety mentions, the ad puts its focus on the Blind Pig, a live music club in Ann Arbor, Michigan which is still closed after 50 years in the business thanks to COVID-19. In the ad, The Blind Pig’s co-owner, Joe Malcoun, has said he is angry over Donald Trump’s response to the pandemic, and he confesses he doesn’t know how much longer the club can survive without any revenue. 

The Blind Pig is sacred ground to musicians. As a live music club it has played host to bands including Nirvana and Soundgarden.

Artists have previously asked for their music to not be played at political gatherings

The Beastie Boys’ move to support a politician is somewhat at odds with what artists have been known to do in the past. As Entertainment Weekly puts it, while every big event needs live music, artists might not want to have their tunes played at rallies. For instance, Queen has already gone after President Donald Trump a few times for using “We are the Champions.” Their disapproval came in a strongly worded statement, saying, “Queen does not want its music associated with any mainstream or political debate in any country. Nor does Queen want ‘We are the Champions’ to be used as an endorsement of Mr. Trump and the political views of the Republican Party,” they said in a statement. “We trust, hope and expect that Mr. Trump and his campaign will respect these wishes moving forward.”

Other artists who have asked to be removed from the White House playlist include Rihanna, who tweeted: “Not for much longer…me nor my people would ever be at or around one of those tragic rallies, so thanks for the heads up philip!” when she was alerted to the fact that Trump was playing “Don’t Stop the Music” in Chattanooga.

Most recently, Phil Collins served a cease and desist order to the Trump campaign after it played “In the Air Tonight” at a campaign rally.

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