Leonard Cohen Estate Slams Republicans For Playing 'Hallelujah'
The estate of Canadian singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen says it wasn’t happy to learn that his classic “Hallelujah” was used twice during the Republican National Convention (RNC).
“We are surprised and dismayed that the RNC would proceed knowing that the Cohen Estate had specifically declined the RNC’s use request, and their rather brazen attempt to politicize and exploit in such an egregious manner ‘Hallelujah,’ one of the most important songs in the Cohen song catalogue,” lawyer Michelle Rice said, in a statement. “We are exploring our legal options.”
Tori Kelly’s cover of Cohen’s 1984 song played over scenes of fireworks following Donald Trump’s speech. Elsewhere, opera singer Christopher Macchio performed “Hallelujah.”
The Cohen estate’s statement ended with some shade for Trump. “Had the RNC requested another song, ‘You Want it Darker’ … we might have considered approval of that song.”
Sony/ATV Music Publishing, which owns the rights to “Hallelujah,” confirmed the RNC asked for permission to use the song but “we declined their request.”
Cohen died in 2016 at 82.
Listen to music from Leonard Cohen