Silversun Pickups Reclaim Song From Romney Campaign

The alternative rock band, the Silversun Pickups, got a lot of unwanted exposure for their song “Panic Switch” this month. The band recently told the Mitt Romney campaign to stop playing their song at events. Rolling Stone reports that the band sent a cease-and-desist order to the campaign demanding they pull the song from events after it was discovered the song had been played during a setup for a campaign event. As singer and guitarist Brian Aubert told reporters this week:

We don’t like people going behind our backs, using our music without asking, and we don’t like the Romney campaign… We’re nice, approachable people. We won’t bite. Unless you’re Mitt Romney! We were very close to just letting this go because the irony was too good. While he is inadvertently playing a song that describes his whole campaign, we doubt that ‘Panic Switch’ really sends the message he intends.

Aubert makes a fantastic final point there. The lyrics reflect a relationship based on control, manipulation and identity. One line reads, “Could I be anything you want me to be, It’s always meant to be seen.” Maybe the Romney campaign was secretly admitting that the whole thing is an act? The chorus is particularly ironic as part of the Romney campaign:

When you see yourself in a crowded room, Do your fingers itch, are you pistol-whipped? Will you step in line or release the glitch? Can you fall asleep with a panic switch?

At any rate, the Associated Press reports that the Romney spokespeople confirmed the song will not be played at any more events. Andrea Saul, spokesperson for Romney told reporters, “As anyone who attends Gov. Romney’s events knows, this is not a song we would have played intentionally… That said, it was covered under the campaign’s regular blanket license, but we will not play it again.”

The band originally heard about the song’s use after it was played at a setup for a Romney event in North Carolina. The Silversun Pickups’ publicist doubts that the song was actually legally covered for use. The debate reflects the often conflicting uses of pop culture and music in political campaigns.

This most recent disagreement is particularly entertaining in light of the song’s lyrics and the band’s reaction. Even Romney’s spokesperson seemed a little thrown by the choice of song at the event, embarrassed that such a snog would even be featured at the faux-centrist’s event. Everyone wins this round since the song was already played once ironically and it has now been pulled from the lineup indefinitely.

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Photo Credit: Flickr, Brian Teutsch

93 comments

Susan O.
Susan O.4 years ago

Romney's "people" show their true colors, as thieves AND liars !!!!

Delaine Buksa
Delaine Buksa4 years ago

Well done Silversun Pickups, you impress me yet again.

Mark T.
Mark T.4 years ago

Thanks Mittens, for turning me on to Silversun Pickups. I think you have inintentionally helped this relatively unknown band get their 15 minutes of fame... maybe even 30 minutes. But Panic Switch is a so unrepublican-like song - it's rather ironic it was choosen. And the fact that it was just taken & used - kinda like an highschool hacker might do for his Student Body President campaign - with out getting permission or offering compensation. Now that part of this thing is very republican.

Mark T.
Mark T.4 years ago

Thanks Mittens, for turning me on to Silversun Pickups. I think you have inintentionally helped this relatively unknown band get their 15 minutes of fame... maybe even 30 minutes. But Panic Switch is a so unrepublican-like song - it's rather ironic it was choosen. And the fact that it was just taken & used - kinda like an highschool hacker might do for his Student Body President campaign - with out getting permission or offering compensation. Now that part of this thing is very republican.

Lee Witton
4 years ago

This is how Republican politicians do things. Nothing is off limits but they are finding out that there are a great many things off limits. And, there is more great stuff to come, just stay tuned. Obama and Biden will be victorious in November, but having said that, we need all 'Obama troops' on the ground to make sure this is a HUGE victory by making sure we get people out to vote.

Charli S.
Charlotte S.4 years ago

I find it interesting that Romeny doesn't understand ownership and thinks that just because HE wants it, it's OK to STEAL. Sort of tells you want kind of man he is. My Dad used to say that it doesn't matter how big the stuff you steal is...you're still a thief!

Frances C.
Frances C.4 years ago

Perhaps the Goofy Old Party should ask the Artist for permission since almost none like the GOP.

Off topic but important. Any women thinking about voting for Repulsive&Ruin and doesn't believe their war on women.... check out Senator Akin who is running for reelection to the Senate...He said, in so many words, pregnant women who say they were raped, weren't really raped, and anyway you can't get pregnant from rape. R&R both are against women's right to choose even in cases of rape and incest.

Teresa Cowley
Teresa Cowley4 years ago

The repugs sense of entitlement never ceases to amaze me--it shouldn't, I know they think they're gods and we're dirt--but they are just off the charts insane!!

Mary L.
Mary L.4 years ago

Good for them!

BMutiny TCorporationsAreE

Lee W:"Bruce Springsteen asked Reagan to cease and desist, Bobby McFerrin asked Bush Sr. to cease and desist, Sting asked Dubya to cease and desist in 2000, John Mellencamp and Jon Bon Jovi, both, asked Dubya to cease and desist in 2004, and there are more examples of other rock bands asking their nemesis to cease and desist. Now, I'm not aware of a Democratic presidential candidate being asked to cease and desist because Dems have enough sense to know which side of the political spectrum the stars are on."
Also MANY OTHER singers, bands and campaigns mentioned on this thread so far...
====================
And so the trolls come on ALL with the SAME Talking Point they get from the RNC {Rethuglican National Committee}, to fall back on when there is Nothing Else To Say:
"This isn't important!" whine whine...
Anything TOTALLY UNREDEEMABLY EMBARRASSING, "isn't important" say trolls.......