20 November 2015Copyright

Republican candidate hit with ‘Eye of the Tiger’ copyright lawsuit

The author of the hit song “Eye of the Tiger” has sued Republican presidential candidate hopeful Mike Huckabee for the alleged unauthorised use of the track at a rally against gay marriage.

Frank Sullivan co-authored the song in his time with the band Survivor and established music label Rude Music, the plaintiff in the copyright claim.

“Eye of the Tiger” was registered with the US Copyright Office in 1982 and has achieved critical acclaim for its use in the film “Rocky III”.

Rude Music complained about Huckabee’s use of the song during a rally in Grayson, Kentucky on September 8 in support of Kim Davis, a local government county clerk who has gained notoriety for her opposition to issuing marriage licences to same-sex couples.

Huckabee is one of 14 candidates campaigning to be the presidential candidate for the Republican Party in the 2016 general election.

Rude Music complained that Huckabee did not gain permission to use the song and his use of it at the rally “wilfully” infringed its copyright.

In the complaint, filed on Wednesday, November 18, Rude Music stated that Huckabee is “sophisticated and knowledgeable” of US copyright law. It cites a previous complaint from the band Boston, which asserted a copyright claim against Huckabee during his 2008 presidential campaign for using the song “More than a Feeling”.

“As a result of the defendant’s wilful infringement of Rude Music’s copyright, Rude Music has been damaged,” the complaint concluded.

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More on this story

14 January 2016   Republican presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee has claimed that the use of the song “Eye of the Tiger” at a rally he attended to support Kentucky-based marriage clerk Kim Davis did not infringe copyright because it was used at a “religious assembly”.
30 June 2016   Former US presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee has settled a copyright dispute with the band Survivor that centred on his use of the song “Eye of the Tiger” during a rally with a prominent county clerk who opposed same sex marriage.