Micah Walter / REUTERS
Rage Against the Machine isn't the first musical act to demand their music be removed from use on Rush Limbaugh's radio show, but they may be the most vehement.
Tom Morello, guitarist for the politically driven rock band, offered this message Thursday on his Twitter feed: “To Rush Limbaugh: Hey Jacka--, stop using our music on your racist, misogynist, right wing clown show. Sincerely, Rage Against The Machine.”
The provocative radio host has played the band’s track "Sleep Now In the Fire" as bumper music on his show.
Morello, a Grammy Award winner who performs as a solo act called Nightwatchman, is also co-founder of Axis of Justice, a non-profit political activist organization aimed at bringing together musicians, fans, and grassroots organizations to fight for social justice. He was in Austin this week performing at the South by Southwest music festival when he sent his tweet.
Rage Against the Machine is only the latest act to want their music pulled from Limbaugh's show after he called Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke a "slut" and a "prostitute" and demanded that she post an online sex video after she testified in favor of insurance companies covering contraception.
Peter Gabriel and Canadian rock band, Rush spoke out earlier, and now The Fabulous Thunderbirds, whose song "Tuff Enuff" and other music has been used on the show, want their music removed.
Fabulous Thunderbirds singer Kim Wilson says he was "mortified by (Limbaugh's) attack on this young woman," adding "there is no amount of money this guy could pay me to be a part of his cruel rhetoric."
But as Rolling Stone points out, bands may have no legal standing as far as demanding that their music be pulled. Attorney Larry Iser told the magazine that radio networks are covered under blanket agreements relating to songs in various publishing catalogs, and Limbaugh is likely well within his right to play the music.
And as some are pointing out, it's unlikely Limbaugh himself is sorting through lists of music and making these selections personally.
“Rush is a conservative, but he's not a racist, and anyone who listens to his show would see that,” writes reader Joe Fierro on Rolling Stone. “He's also pretty much deaf, and it is doubtful he picks his own "bumper " music these days, or would even be able to tell the difference between Rage Against the Machine and Nickelback.”
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