The Rapper K’Naan Is Not Happy That Mitt Romney Used His Song At A Speech

Well, it’s election season and you know what that means; musical artists around the world are showing just how pissed off they are that some stodgy politician is awkwardly walking on stage to their music. The latest example is the rapper K’Naan who is none too happy that Mitt Romney used his hit song “Wavin’ Flag” during his Florida primary victory speech. Of course, that’s not surprising. The really surprising news is that Mitt Romney used a rapper’s song during a speech. Really? The Mitt Romney? This Mitt Romney?

So, what’s the song? Well, “Wavin’ Flag” is the hit single from the Somali Canadian artist K’naan. (Sheesh. When Ronald Reagan was horribly misappropriating pop music, he at least was careful enough to anger actual American pop stars)

Here’s some of the lyrics:

“Born to a throne, stronger than Rome
But Violent prone, poor people zone
But its my home, all I have known
Where I got grown, streets we would roam
But out of the darkness, I came the farthest
Among the hardest survival
Learn from these streets, it can be bleak
Except no defeat, surrender retreat”

Ah, it’s a song about overcoming the difficult and violent adversities faced by those from the street. That makes it entirely perfect for…Mitt…Romney…

Anyway, in Romney’s defense, it’s possible he used the 2010 remix of the song that eliminates some of the darker elements. K’Naan released the new version to help commemorate the World Cup and it’s filled with the triumphant sound of tons of tribal drums. Perfect for…Mitt…Romney…

Anyway, while K’Naan was fine with one of the biggest international sporting events in the world using his song to bring countries together, he was shockingly nonplussed when an American politician used it to celebrate his victory in a Republican primary.

From the Associated Press:

“The Somali-born, Canadian-based rapper says he would happily grant President Barack Obama’s campaign the use of the song.

K’Naan says he wants to make sure Romney does not use his song again and is seeking legal action.

Romney spokesman Rick Gorka says the song was used through the campaign’s regular blanket license but, out of respect for K’Naan’s statement, won’t be used again.”


Oh, well. Bruce Springsteen just released a new single, Mitt! I’m sure that, if you don’t listen to the lyrics at all, it’ll be perfect for your campaign!

Watch the video for the 2010 version of K’Naan’s song below:

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