Pharrell Williams sent a legal warning to Donald Trump after the singer’s “Happy” was played at the president’s political event in Indiana Saturday, a rally held just hours after the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting.
“On the day of the mass murder of 11 human beings at the hands of a deranged ‘nationalist,’ you played his song ‘Happy’ to a crowd at a political event in Indiana,” Williams’ attorney Howard King wrote to Trump in the cease-and-desist letter (via The Hollywood Reporter).
“There was nothing ‘happy’ about the tragedy inflicted upon our country on Saturday and no permission was granted for your use of this song for this purpose.”
The cease-and-desist letter continued, ” Pharrell Williams is the owner of the copyright in ‘Happy,’ with the exclusive right to exploit same. Pharrell has not, and will not, grant you permission to publicly perform or otherwise broadcast or disseminate any of his music.” The Washington Post reported Sunday that “Happy” was played at the Indiana rally in support of Rep. Mike Bost.
Williams is the latest artist to threaten legal action against Trump if the president continued to play their music at his pre-midterm rallies: Earlier this month, Prince’s estate asked Trump to cease using “Purple Rain” at rallies, while Steven Tyler issued a cease-and-desist letter in August after Trump’s rallies broadcasted Aerosmith’s “Livin’ on the Edge.”