Turtles Say Use of 'Happy Together' at RNC Was Unauthorized

Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan of The Turtles
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Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan of The Turtles perform at Seminole Casino Coconut Creek on June 15, 2013 in Coconut Creek, Fla.

Howard Kaylan of the Turtles and Flo and Eddie said in a post on Twitter July 18 there could be legal action against the Republican National Committee for its use of “Happy Together” at the Republican National Convention, which opened today in Cleveland, Ohio. “We never approved this use. Now we call the lawyers,” Kaylan, the Turtles' lead singer on the song, wrote. USA Today reported the song was played shortly after “The Star-Spangled Banner” and “The Pledge of Allegiance” to open the convention.

It's not the first instance of unauthorized use of songs by politicians. R.E.M., as reported by Rolling Stone, told Donald Trump and Mike Huckabee to stop using their music last September. And in June of 2015, Neil Young told NPR he was mad that Trump had used “Rockin' in the Free World” to announce his presidential campaign. Trump also angered the Shangri-Las for using “Leader of the Pack” during his campaign rallies.

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“Happy Together” debuted on the Billboard singles chart on Feb. 11, 1967. It was the band's first No. 1 hit and the only one the group managed during the '60s, though they had five Top 10 songs on the Billboard charts during that time.