Village People frontman Victor Willis is once again asking Donald Trump to stop using his music.
Willis, frontman of the American disco group, known for hit singles such as 'Y.M.C.A', 'Macho Man', 'In the Navy', and 'Go West'.
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After a video circulated last week of Trump dancing at Mar-a-Lago to a cover band performing "Macho Man". Village People manager Karen Willis (also the wife of Victor) sent a cease and desist letter addressed to Trump's lawyer Joseph Tacipona.
\u201cYou have to love Trump\u2019s dance moves! \ud83d\udd7a\ud83d\udc47\u201d— Lyndy (@Lyndy) 1683894621
The letter explains that under the Lanham Act, a copyright law that protects trademark owners against 'consumer confusion', the performance constitutes a violation of the Act. Citing social media posts that believed the performers were the genuine Village People.
\u201cIn this hubbub over Trump dancing...why the fuck were the Village People playing at Mar a Lago? They used to tell him not to use their music. Now they're playing his parties?? Do I have something wrong?\u201d— Michael Tomasky (@Michael Tomasky) 1684021408
Willis writes that the performance at Mar-a-Lago was unauthorised and 'it is requested that he cease and desist any such further unauthorised use of the Village People image in association with the songs and his campaign (or in his personal capacity)'. As to ensure it is not interpreted that Village People endorse the Trump Campaign.
\u201cThe Village People lead singer sent Trump a cease and desist over a performance of "Macho Man" at Mar-a-Lago:\u201d— Aidan McLaughlin (@Aidan McLaughlin) 1684171433
Trump has been known to use Village People songs such as 'Y.M.C.A' and 'Macho Man' at rallies and events over the years. Initially, Willis did not prevent Trump from using his music, writing on Facebook in Feb. 2020 "our music is not being used for a specific endorsement".
However by June 2020, criticising Trump's response to Black Lives Matters protests, Willis added 'I ask that you no longer use any of my music at your rallies'.
At the end of her letter, Willis added that if Trump continues to use 'the Village People trademarked image and trade dress, but of the music as well' they will 'bring suit' to prevent further use.
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