R.E.M. Exploring 'All Legal Avenues' to Stop Pres. Trump From Using Their Songs at Campaign Rallies

Michael Stipe of R.E.M.
Matteo Nardone/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

Michael Stipe of R.E.M. 

R.E.M. have spoken out once again about Pres. Trump's use of their songs at his campaign rallies. After Trump reportedly played the group's "Everybody Hurts" and "Losing My Religion" at his re-election gathering in Milwaukee on Tuesday, bassist Mike Mills tweeted that legal action is being considered.    

"We are aware that the President* @realDonaldTrump continues to use our music at his rallies," wrote Mills. "We are exploring all legal avenues to prevent this, but if that’s not possible please know that we do not condone the use of our music by this fraud and con man." (And, if you've got a minute, check out Mills' excellent, often hilarious re-trolling of his trolls.)

While a spokesperson for the group -- which disbanded in 2011 -- could not be reached for comment at press time, this is not the first time the band has spoken out about Trump's use of their music at his political gatherings. Last February, Twitter pulled down a Trump video that played "Everybody Hurts" in a clip that mocked his Democrat rivals. The band also spoke out in 2015, saying they did not "authorize or condone" the former Apprentice star's use of 1987's "It's The End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" at a rally.

Days before this week's legal threat, Mills referred to Trump as an "Adderal-deranged idiot" who is "renting out troops out as mercenaries" after Trump said he told Saudi Arabia, "you're a very rich country. You want more troops? I'll send them to you, but you have to pay us."

R.E.M. are among a dozen acts who've asked the president to cease-and-desist from using their music at his events, among them  Rihanna ("Don't Stop the Music"), Pharrell ("Happy"), Guns N' Roses ("Sweet Child o' Mine"), Steven Tyler ("Livin' on the Edge"), as well as Adele ("Rolling in the Deep"), Neil Young ("Rockin' in the Free World") and The Rolling Stones ("Start Me Up," "You Can't Always Get What You Want" and "Brown Sugar"), as well as the estates of Prince ("Purple Rain") and George Harrison (The Beatles' "Here Comes the Sun").

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